Explaining the need for this course, Estes said, “Have you tried to pry a cell phone from a teenager’s hands? How will they ever post that selfie on social media? Even sixth graders are addicted to gaming and online apps, spending more time inside in front of a phone or screen than outside playing.”
Internet addiction is described as an impulse control disorder, which does not involve the use of an intoxicating drug and is very similar to pathological gambling or sex addiction. Some Internet users may develop an emotional attachment to online friends and activities they create on their computer screens.
The Nationally Certified Internet Addictions Coaching Course covers all facets of Internet Addiction and how the coaching process is imperative in behavior modification. Types of Internet Addiction now recognized by many experts include obsessions with social media, porn, shopping, gaming, streaming movies/tv, chatrooms, and what’s known as the dark web.
“Social media is creating social disruption, where an entirely false reality can be created, including photos and jobs, a life that is not real,” Dr. Estes explained.
The Guardian recently reported about a recent study. Apparently, Deloitte surveyed 4,150 British adults in 2017 about their mobile habits, 38% said they thought they were using their smartphone too much. Among 16- to 24-year-olds, that rose to more than half. Habits such as checking apps in the hour before we go to sleep (79% of us do this, according to the study) or within 15 minutes of waking up (55%) may be taking their toll on our mental health.
Apps to curb smartphone addiction are popping up regularly on Apple’s App Store. One of the latest apps is called Mute (free). It’s one of several apps – Space and Moment are others – that track how often you unlock your phone and how much time you spend using it, in order to help you reduce your time on it.
For Space CEO Georgie Powell, “the wake-up moment for me was when I was breastfeeding my daughter while looking at photos of her on my phone. I was so distracted by my phone, I wasn’t present with her!”
Norwegian app Hold even tries to incentivize its users by offering points for reducing their smartphone habit, which they can exchange for snacks and movie tickets.
CBS News recently reported on another study from Europe. The study appears to show the effects internet addiction has on your body and how it relates to alcohol or drug withdrawal.
They found people who admitted that they spent too much time online, had an increased heart rate and blood pressure of three to eight percent to go along with a matching anxiety level. People who don’t spend significant time online saw little change.
“The individuals in our study used the internet in a fairly typical way, so we are confident that many people who over-use the internet could be affected in the same way,” said study lead Phil Reed. “However, there are groups who use the internet in other ways, like gamers, perhaps to generate arousal, and the effects of stopping use on their physiology could be different – this is yet to be established.”
Like people suffering withdrawal from alcohol, marijuana, and heroin, researchers believe digital addicts feel the need to re-engage or log on, to reduce those unpleasant feelings.
The study also found that the participants spent an average of 5 hours a day on the internet, with 20% spending over 6 hours a day using the internet. More than 40% of the sample reported some level of internet-related problem, acknowledging that they spend too much time online.
There was no difference between men and women in the tendency to show internet addiction.
Estes voiced, “I have seen a tendency in many of my clients who are in recovery from alcohol or drugs to get completely hooked on some sort of digital experience. In my experience, the trend has been growing steadily at an alarming rate and we feel it’s important to provide these coaching skills to those who can help.”
Find out more about this course at https://theaddictionsacademy.com.
To learn more about Dr. Cali Estes, The Addictions Coach, visit https://theaddictionscoach.com.