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Question Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - August 9th 2010, 10:14 AM

I read something in the newspaper this morning that said:
Quote:
Scientists have discovered that teenagers who are addicted to the internet are two times more likely to suffer from depression.
This link to the news story explains it all.

Quote:
Study participants were asked questions designed to spot signs of anxiety and depression that are known to accompany addiction behaviour.
They included the question: "How often do you feel depressed, moody or nervous when you are off-line, which goes away once you are back on-line?"
Do any of you feel like this?
What do you think? Are you more depressed when not on the internet? Or do you think these scientists are just inventing statistics in order to make it look like they're being paid to actually do something?


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Re: Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - August 9th 2010, 10:18 AM

I'd have to agree. I wouldn't say I get depressed when I'm not on the internet, but I'm more irritable and more likely to stress out. And I keep glancing in the direction of the nearest computor


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Re: Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - August 9th 2010, 10:22 AM

I would have said people being depressed led them to be on the internet more often, due to not wanting to go out and do anything, rather than the internet addiction being the cause of the depression?

Last edited by noise94; August 9th 2010 at 10:28 AM.
   
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Re: Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - August 9th 2010, 11:13 AM

I suppose it's obvious in a way. If you have an internet addiction you'd be isolating yourself from the real world a lot more.


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Re: Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - August 9th 2010, 12:12 PM

hmm. i spend a lot of time online but i certainly don't feel depressed when i'm away from my computer. i'm generally perfectly happy both online and offline.


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Re: Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - August 9th 2010, 01:54 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Elle. View Post
hmm. i spend a lot of time online but i certainly don't feel depressed when i'm away from my computer. i'm generally perfectly happy both online and offline.
Yeah, same here. I never feel depressed when I am offline either. I don't feel 'that bad' I should say.
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Re: Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - August 9th 2010, 01:58 PM

I've felt depressed before I got addicted to the internet.
So I don't think it's quite true. It all depends on the person, I guess.



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Re: Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - August 9th 2010, 02:16 PM

Actually, I like having some time offline, even if that means I have to go to work or classes to free myself from it. It feels good to have that social stimulation. I wouldn't say I feel depressed when I'm not online, though I do find myself needing to check my e-mail and facebook when I'm out and about (which I do on my phone). I suppose you could say I get a little anxious when I'm not online, maybe because I feel like I could miss something important?


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Re: Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - August 9th 2010, 02:54 PM

I can see how it can, but I'm not affected
Personally I think it will depend on the person


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Re: Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - August 9th 2010, 03:21 PM

I think the scientists just wanted to seem like they were doing something. If you're "addicted" to anything, then of course you're more likely to become depressed when not having your fix. A symptom of withdrawal is...you guessed it...depression. A 13 year old text addict could've said that. Or maybe there's more to the story.
   
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Re: Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - August 9th 2010, 04:28 PM

The internet doesn't make my depression go away. A lot of times I'll turn to it to get my mind off of things, but it's not like the moment I go online I'm happier. When I'm away from the computer I'll sometimes wish I was online instead, but it doesn't make me feel depressed that I'm not.





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Re: Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - August 9th 2010, 05:04 PM

but wouldnt it go the same for everything?
if you have an addiction to smoking... then you're going to be all mopey/sad/irritable/etc. when you dont have anything to smoke.
or if you have an addiction to soccer or some other sport...
& you got hurt & cant play.
you're going to be depressed that you cant play...

so i really dont think that its just the internet.
its everything... & how much someone is addicted to something.
   
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Re: Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - August 9th 2010, 07:04 PM

Well, when I used to be depressed I would come online more often to find people to chat with and stuff. The depression existed before I started using the computer a lot though.


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Re: Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - August 9th 2010, 07:28 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by ~Emily~ View Post
Actually, I like having some time offline, even if that means I have to go to work or classes to free myself from it. It feels good to have that social stimulation. I wouldn't say I feel depressed when I'm not online, though I do find myself needing to check my e-mail and facebook when I'm out and about (which I do on my phone). I suppose you could say I get a little anxious when I'm not online, maybe because I feel like I could miss something important?
That's pretty much the way I feel. If you give me my twitter, my email, my news, then I'm happy
   
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Re: Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - August 9th 2010, 08:56 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by ~Emily~ View Post
Actually, I like having some time offline, even if that means I have to go to work or classes to free myself from it. It feels good to have that social stimulation. I wouldn't say I feel depressed when I'm not online, though I do find myself needing to check my e-mail and facebook when I'm out and about (which I do on my phone). I suppose you could say I get a little anxious when I'm not online, maybe because I feel like I could miss something important?
Weird, my girlfriend just told my her Dad sent her this.

I would have to agree with Emily on this.




   
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Re: Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - August 10th 2010, 04:21 AM

I don't think the internet makes you depressed, but it usually keeps you there.

A few years ago I starting learning about all the support sites there are online - like the ones that support eating disorders and SH. It's crazy. And that was while trying to find help and support in stopping SH.


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Re: Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - August 10th 2010, 06:12 AM

In my mostly likely view, I would have to say yes, it can be true, but it's not the only reason for depression/anxiety. As a person who has this, I've had anxiety before I ever went on the internet.



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Re: Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - August 16th 2010, 02:44 PM

I agree with most of the other people here, correlation doesn't necessitate causation. Plenty of people seem to be depressed/anxious and with the internet as an outside factor.
   
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Re: Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - August 16th 2010, 03:21 PM

I dont think they are making making up statistics.... they may be making a conclusion thats too far for the existing evidence, but by the looks of it, its a preliminary study. It gives future research a direction.

And regardless of caustation or not, if a correlation is found in further study, then screening might be worth while if it can give a heads up to an at risk group with increasing levels of internet addiction.
   
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Re: Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - August 16th 2010, 05:22 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChaseThisLight View Post
I would have said people being depressed led them to be on the internet more often, due to not wanting to go out and do anything, rather than the internet addiction being the cause of the depression?
possibly..
becoming addicted to the internet and spending lots of time on forums such as these --> social isolation (online friends do not count as social interaction) --> increased depression

It is somewhat of a cycle but I can't see how spending long periods of time online would NOT make a depressed person more depressed.

Pretty sure that Rob did research into something similar.


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Re: Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - August 16th 2010, 07:13 PM

I use the internet quite a lot on a daily basis, i enjoy using the internet but i wouldn't say that when i'm away from it that i feel depressed. It doesn't really cross my mind much either and as others said it feels nice to get away from it, since when i'm at home the internet and my laptop are the main things i use (along with tv/dvds/games in the background).

I think with some people it may be true, some people may get depressed by some of the things they read on the internet (maybe facebook?), but i also think that a lot of people go to the internet when they feel depressed either to take their mind off it, seek help on a site like this or even research things that may be going on in their life. They may even use the internet for self-help reasons because they feel like they can't go to a medical professional or friends/family.
   
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Re: Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - August 17th 2010, 07:13 AM

I'm definitely not as depressed as I used to be but I think a lot of the time it's the other way around, people turn to the computer because they're depressed to start with.

I know I'd be less depressed if I had friends to hang out with and things to do, but I don't, which is why I'm on the computer. I don't get upset or anything when I'm not on the computer, and if I can't be on it for a long time but I'm doing something else I'm okay (like when I go camping or something) but if I'm stuck at home and my computer isn't working for a long time, I tend to get upset, not because I don't have a computer but because there's nothing else to do. I mean that's okay for a day or something, but after a couple of days with nothing to do it's pretty bad.

Now I've started school again I don't think it would be that bad however apart from my mother, every few weeks my sister and every few months a friend, the internet is the only way I can interact with people.


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Re: Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - August 18th 2010, 02:27 AM

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Originally Posted by Regina Phalange View Post
I suppose it's obvious in a way. If you have an internet addiction you'd be isolating yourself from the real world a lot more.
I agree with this. I became less depressed once I became less dependent on being online. It's such a good way to shelter yourself, which in turn alienates you from the real world.




   
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Re: Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - August 19th 2010, 12:50 AM

Depression -> internet addiction -> more depression.

At least, that's how it was for me. When I wasn't allowed to see friends outside of school, I had no choice but to entertain myself at home. Reading, drawing, and listening to music could only entertain me for so long... so I would spend more and more time on the internet. As I became addicted, I put less and less effort into my friendships, schoolwork, etc. That led to my feeling isolated both at home AND at school... which just made my depression worse... which pushed me to spend even more of my free time online.

To be honest, I think it could go both ways. If you're depressed, you may turn to the internet for comfort. If you're always on the internet, then other aspects of your life may suffer, thus leading to depression. I'm tired of seeing so many studies about how tech-saavy kids are losers. xD ANYTHING, in excess, is bad for you. Spending time online every day isn't suddenly going to make you more vulnerable to depression. If that were the case, then the percentage of individuals with diagnosable mental disorders would be MUCH higher than 10-20%... it'd be more like 70-80%!





   
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Re: Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - August 19th 2010, 01:06 AM

well i agree some ish. but i mean more like the internet can bring me down sometimes, if ur talking to real depressed people, but then so does talking to depressed people in RL... so idk im on the fence for this one


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Re: Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - August 25th 2010, 09:42 PM

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Originally Posted by ChaseThisLight View Post
I would have said people being depressed led them to be on the internet more often, due to not wanting to go out and do anything, rather than the internet addiction being the cause of the depression?
Agreed, also the inability to go out and do anything. All the friends I had back in high school moved away, or are no longer my friends. So I don't get out often, and it's nice to hop online and converse with them, or other people I can relate to more these days.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AmberS9109 View Post
I've felt depressed before I got addicted to the internet.
So I don't think it's quite true. It all depends on the person, I guess.
Same here, have had messed-up feelings for like, 10 years now. And safe to say, I wasn't really using the internet 10 years ago, considering it was dial-up or nothing back then, so it was rare I'd go on, and for short periods of time, mostly playing Yahoo Games.


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Re: Teenage Internet Addicts More Likely To Suffer From Depression - September 9th 2010, 12:47 AM

I think that being online for a large amount of time as a teenager could possibly lead to depression. I know that a lot of teens spend an excessive amount of time on here and that would lead to an unhealthy life style and such an excessive amount of time online could, in some cases, lead to a crappy offline social life. But it really just depends on the person.


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