Internet addiction and associated health risks among medical undergraduates in North India
Over the past few years, the exponential technological growth and excessive internet use have led to its entry into practically every aspect of daily life. The same can be said about the pervasive presence and usage of internet across all generations This use of digital technology has completely transformed the lifestyle of the present generation making lives easier and enriched in a variety of ways, but this technological progress comes at a heavy price associated with the risks of its overuse.
The result of maladaptive use of internet is now becoming evident in all users, with the youth being most vulnerable as overuse can easily change into abuse to the extent that it interferes with the ability to engage in routine activities. It is now believed that certain attributes of internet use can foster compulsive addictive behaviour in context to what has been recognised as Internet addiction (IA) or ‘compulsive Internet use’. The term Internet Addiction was first introduced by Young, who defined it as an impulse control disorder in the absence of an intoxicant. It refers to an individual’s helplessness to control the use of the internet, resulting in significant anguish and functional damage in daily life. Thus, IA portrays a state of a psychological dependence on the internet, notwithstanding the activities that may be pursued after logging in.