‘Internet addicts feel irritated, ignore family members’
Sunaina, 16, (name changed) is undergoing treatment for Internet addiction at the special clinic run by the department of psychiatry at King George’s Medical University (KGMU). She visits this clinic along with her parents for counselling sessions.
“Restrictions on going out of the house and no one to interact with made the Internet her friend. Her usage went to up six hours a day, making her an Internet addict,” said Sujit Kumar Kar, associate professor in the department, who is treating her.
Along with the girl, her parents are also being counselled, so that they take out time for her, said Kar.
He was speaking to the media on the sidelines of an event where the department launched a survey report ‘The perceived stress and coping in community representative population of Uttar Pradesh’ on Thursday.
“Internet addicts feel irritated, emptiness and become short tempered. Such people ignore family members,” said Kar.
“Such symptoms, arising out of excessive Internet usage, were found in nearly 10% of the people we surveyed. In all, 12,080 people were surveyed in Muzaffarnagar, Jhansi, Maharajganj and Lakhimpur Kheri,” said Kar.
The survey was aimed at studying perceived stress, coping, perceived social support, depression, anxiety and social media disorder (Internet addiction) in community population ranging from 13-75 years of age.
“Excessive use of Internet not just disturbs routine activity and sleep, but also reduces academic performance of children. If they score 80-90% in Class 8, their score may drop to 50-60% in Class 10,” said Kar.
Financial difficulty was also a key factor highlighted in the survey. “More than 90% individuals (those included in the survey) experienced stress at some point of time during past one year. This was because they failed to achieve the desired financial goals,” stated the survey report.
TAKEWAYS FROM THE SURVEY
15% rural folks have personalised Internet
31.4% urban population has personal Internet
93% males use Internet for social media
92% females watch video and listen to music via Internet
10% people surveyed use Internet more than 3 hours per day