Prevalence and factors associated with internet addiction among adolescents in Malaysia: a cross-sectional study

  • Chor Yau Ooi Universiti Malaysia Sarawak
  • Siew Mooi Ching
  • Norsiah Ali
  • Shahnul Kamal Hj Sidek
  • Azlin Amat
  • Yusnita Yatim
  • Zaiton Yahaya
  • Nabihah Shamsuddin
  • Idora Ibrahim
  • Fauzia Abdul Majid
  • Fazlin Suhana Othman
  • Nik Suhaila Zakaria
  • Artini Abidin
  • Nor Hazlin Talib
Keywords: Internet addiction, Adolescents, Prevalence, Primary care, Malaysia


Background: Internet addiction (IA) among adolescents has become an important health problem due to its association with many negative consequences if not prevented early. However, there were no data on IA among adolescents in Malaysia.

Aim: The objective of this study was to determine the prevalence and factors associated with IA among adolescents aged 10 to 19 years of age in Malaysia.

Methods: A cross-sectional study was done in 15 primary care clinics throughout Malaysia using the validated Malay version of the Internet Addiction Test. A standardized, self-administered questionnaire on socio-demographic data and questions assessing IA were given to the participants. Data analyses were done using Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) 21. The findings were described in terms of frequencies, percentages, means, and standard deviations. The association between socio-demographic factors and IA was determined by using univariate analysis. Multivariate logistic regressions were used to identify predictors of IA

Results: A total of 921 participants were included in this study. The male population was 49.5% (n=456), with a mean age of 16.38±2.38 years. The prevalence of internet addiction was 56.4% (n=519). The significant predictors of internet addiction were age, mother's high education level, and having a smartphone.

Conclusion: This study showed that there is a high prevalence of internet addiction among adolescents in Malaysia.

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