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Internet: Latest Addiction

Friday, November 14th, 2008 Internet: Latest Addiction

Chinese experts are stating that internet addiction is a clinical disorder as growing numbers of people spend hours online every day. In fact the Chinese are the first in the world to recognise the existence of problem.

According to the definition, based on a study of more than 1,300 problematic users, symptoms of the addiction include yearning to get back online, mental or physical distress, irritation and difficulty concentrating or sleeping.

Moreover, it has been established that those who spend more than 6 hours a day displayed at least one symptom on the last three months.

A Military General Hospital in Beijing has been set up for the first internet addicts, run by Dr Tao Ran. Treatments have an eighty percent success rate and the treatment process is a twelve week duration.

According to recent information there are an estimated 253 million Chinese internet users. Of that proportion about 10 per cent of young users - or four million people - suffer from addiction and of those about 70 per cent are male. More worrying is the fact that the condition is often a symptom of deeper psychological problems, according to Dr Tao, and all child addicts have behavioural problems, which are then made worse by their addiction.

For Dr Tao, he has compared his information along with that of experts from the US, where internet addiction is not recognised as a disease.

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