Internet Addiction Alters Brain Structure

21 June, 2011 at 15:21 | Posted in Body & Mind, IT and Media, Science | Leave a comment
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By Ridge Shan
Epoch Times Staff

A recent study conducted by scientists from Xidian University in China and several other medical research institutes in China and the U.S., published through PLoS One, a peer-reviewed scientific journal, has concluded that long-term internet addiction, especially during the formative years of adolescence, may produce an altered brain structure.

The study describes rising instances of Internet Addiction Disorder (IAD) among adolescent youth throughout the world, most prevalently in China where the addiction rate among urban youth is approximately 14 percent, or 24 million kids.

The study links IAD with “impairment of [an] individual’s psychological well-being, academic failure and reduced word performance,” stating that although not universally accepted as a medical phenomenon, “IAD is growing in prevalence and has attracted the attention of psychiatrists, educators, and the public.”

According to the article, other studies have shown other indicating factors, for example that the crave for online gaming and the crave for highly addictive and dependent chemical substances, like opiates, may “share the same neurobiological mechanisms,” that adolescents with IAD are more impulsive than those without, and that IAD test subjects processed information less effectively.

Read more: Internet Addiction Alters Brain Structure | Technology | Epoch Times


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