Internet and relationships. When you feel more comfortable

Internet is recognized as medium for information
exchange in various fields such as in academic research, entertainment,
communication and commerce. compulsive Internet use can interfere with daily
life, work, and relationships. When you feel more comfortable with your online
friends than your real ones, or you can’t stop yourself from playing games,
gambling, or compulsively checking your tablet, or other mobile device, then
you may be using the internet too much.  21st
century youth have become far more dependent upon connectivity for studying,
playing, communicating and socializing. Adolescents internet addiction
participants compulsively use the internet, to such an extent that it is given
priority over all other responsibilities which also affect time and attention
to school work, and domestic responsibilities at home, and even adolescents
interaction and relationships. Some also suffer health consequences from loss
of sleep back strain and eye strain as they stay up later to chat online, check
for social network status updates or to reach the next game levels. Which is a
sign of internet addiction.

Internet
provides a constant, ever-changing source of information and entertainment, and
can be accessed from smart phones as well as tablets, laptops, and desktop
computers. Spending a lot of time online only becomes a problem when it absorbs
too much of one’s time, causing to neglect 
relationships, home work, school work, or other important things in life.

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 Definition
of Internet Addiction

Addictive
use of the internet is a new phenomenon that many practitioners are unaware of
and consequently unprepared to treat. Some practitioners are unfamiliar with
the Internet, making its seductive powers difficult to understand. Sometimes
its impact on the afflicted person’s life is underestimated as many
practitioners do not recognize the legitimacy of the disorder. Hence, this
paper starts with a review of the diagnostic criteria of internet addiction to
help prepare clinicians for this issue.

Signs of
Internet addiction:

Signs of
Internet addiction vary from person to person. For example, there are no set
hours per day or number of messages sent that indicate Internet addiction. But
here are some general warning signs that your Internet use may have become a
problem which includes, Losing track of
time online,  Having trouble completing
tasks at school work or home work, Isolation from family and friends, Feeling
guilty or defensive about your Internet use and Feeling a sense of euphoria
while involved in Internet activities. Which is a sign of internet
addiction.

Reasons
for Internet Addictions:

When you
have a bad day and are looking for a way to escape your problems or to quickly
relieve stress or self-soothe, the Internet can be an easily accessible outlet.
Losing yourself online can temporarily make feelings such as loneliness,
stress, anxiety, depression, and boredom evaporate into thin air. Use of
internet may provide comfort, but it’s important to remember that there
are  more effective ways to keep
difficult feelings in check. These may include exercising, meditating, and
practicing simple relaxation techniques.

Effects of Internet Addiction

In many ways,
internet addiction can be compared to an addiction to drugs or alcohol in that, internet
addiction causes a desire to use the internet more and more in order to produce
a satisfactory effect. This is similar to the way an alcoholic may need to
drink more alcohol in order to feel the benefits of the substance or the way
that a drug addict may use more drugs in an effort to produce the same “high.”
Internet addicts become dependent on the use of cyberspace in order to feel
normal.

Internet addicts
struggle to control their behaviours and often experience great despair over
their consistent failure to escape their addictive
behaviours. A loss of self-esteem and a burning desire to escape can lead
the addict further into their addiction sending them into a whirlwind of social
anguish, relationship failure and emotional pain. Finally it may cause a sense
of powerlessness for the addict.

REVIEW
OF LITERATURE

M. Y?lmaz and Feza Orhana (2010) studied 921 secondary school
students and Learning

Process Questionnaire (LPQ) was used.
According to the data obtained, the researchers examined that the ratios of the
Internet usage for educational purposes for deep learning and by the students
who are given assignments by the Internet are higher when compared to the
surface learners.

Camilla Brändström (2011) studied data from five upper
secondary school teachers through face-to-face interview, where the researcher
found that the teachers think that the Internet is a valuable teaching tool
which can increase the motivation of the students, make teaching more
enjoyable, and allow variation in teaching. The drawbacks of the Internet usage
are students’ cheating, unreliable information, technical problems, and
students’ extracurricular activities during lessons. The Internet can affect a
student’s academic performance in both positive and negative way so that we
need to control Internet usage which can have positive influence on student’s
academic performance.

Sedigh (1996) studied the network was linked to some
other networks while continuing its work and considering its high efficiency,
the scientists and research institutions were soon attracted to that. The
rudimentary network was abandoned by the American government but this developed
form of network is now transmitting so much diverse and expanded information
all over the world to millions of users.

Sati and Khalid, (2002) found that the Internet has
emerged as the most visible component of the dynamic developments of information
and communication technologies. It has also affected the field of education at
all levels. The worldwide web is one of the important innovations of human
beings so far. To emphasize its importance, some of the theoreticians mentioned
the effects of this giant information highway as the effects of printing
invention on the lives of human beings.

Vandana and Rishu, (2011) described that our global
economy now relies on brainpower and innovation rather than manual labour and
raw material as a generator of wealth and good education has become the key
part in shaping the success of the countries. Over the last decade, the IT
revolution has brought in advancement that shows increasingly visible effects
on the education.

Commission of the European Communities (2009) explains
the growth of the Internet is an on-going process: only twenty-five years ago
it was connecting about a thousand hosts and has grown ever since to link
billions people through computers and mobile devices. One major next step in
this development is to progressively evolve from a network of interconnected
computers to a network of interconnected objects, from books to cars, from
electrical appliances to food, and thus create an ‘Internet of things’.

Cooha, (2001) found that the Internet is
transmitting millions of messages that influence on values, attitudes, cultural
identity of the users in minor scales, and cultural-political systems in major
scales. The network is being examined from different scientific, cultural,
economic, and political aspects. In terms of cultural aspect, the network is
the first step in appropriate planning to manage cultural changes and
preventing discordant changes in social systems by emphasizing on the study of
political values as part of political culture especially when it is done with scientific
methods. technology is one of the factors of social change that lead to some
changes in personality system of the individuals in individual level and
political systems in larger levels through the relationship with different components
inside the social systems of different communities especially by cultural
sub-systems.

 

METHODOLOGY

The researcher has attempted to study the level of internet addiction among school
going adolescents in Madurai district. The objectives
of study were to observe the various aspects of internet addiction and
adolescent life and to assess the extent of internet addiction among adolescent
school going as per their socio-economic characteristics.  The researcher had adopted descriptive research design for the present
study in order to describe the level of internet addiction among school going
adolescents in Madurai district. The universe of the study comprises of adolescent
girls and boys’ studying in Govt. Hr. Sec. School, Samayanallur in Madurai
district and the total strength is 367. The population of the study is being a finite one. The lists of the
students were obtained from the respective schools which served as the sampling
frame. The simple random sampling method was applied. The researcher has used standardized tool for collecting the data
for the present study the first part of the questionnaire included the
questions pertaining to personal and academic related matters. The internet
addiction of adolescents was collected by using Internet Addiction Test (IAT) developed by Dr.
Kimberly Young (2009) which has 20 items. The scores obtained
were subject to statistical treatment using proper statistical techniques. The
results obtained are interpreted and discussed in the light of problem factors
to make the result meaningful.

RESULTS AND
DISCUSSION

A sizeable
number of the respondents (36%) are in the age of 15 years. More than half of the respondents
(54 %) are female. Majority of the respondents (64%) have one sibling.  Majority of the respondents (74%) are from
nuclear family. Great majority of the respondents (88%) are living with their
parents. Majority of the respondents (64%) have basic education in English
medium. Vast majority of the respondents (88%) reported that their family
monthly income falls between Rs. 15,001 to Rs. 30,000.  We can understand from the study that, little
more than half of the respondents (52%) reported that they are studying 10th
standard.  Majority of the respondents
(70%) have reported that they do not have any health issues. It is also found
that
there is no significant difference among the respondent’s family monthly income
and class study with internet addiction.
There is no significant difference between type of family, gender and domicile
with internet addiction. There is no significant relationship between age,
birth order and no. of siblings and internet addiction.

 

 

Distribution of Respondents by
their perceived levels of Internet Addiction  

Variables

Frequency  (n=50)

Percentage

Low

12

24.0

Moderate

22

44.0

High

16

32.0

Total

50

100.0

 

It is evident
from the above table that, less than half of the respondents (44%) have
moderate level of internet addiction.

 

SUGGESTIONS

In today’s society
where the use of the internet is present in schools, at home and on the go, children
and teens are subjected to a whole new potential for internet addiction that
was not necessarily present for adults until recently. Preventing internet
addiction in children and teens can be more difficult that we may think. As a
parent, there is a fine line between the level of internet usage that is
acceptable and what is not for a child or teen.

There are many steps that you can
take to reduce impulsive behaviors and get our children’s internet usage under
control. Many of the ways that we can get help for internet addiction can
actually be taken on by us individually without the need for treatment. These are the tips to prevent internet addiction in
children and teens:

§  Limit internet usage to include minimal use for social interaction.

§  Internet use should focus on the need to use the internet for school
assignments and       research.

§  Limit internet gaming

§  Monitor internet use and set boundaries

§  Keep internet usage restricted to specific areas of the home

§  Talking to our children about anxiety, depression, school, and other
potential triggers that may be causing additional internet use

§  Seek help form a doctor, friend or professional if your child seems to
be spending too much time online

CONCLUSION

Research related to Internet use need to be an ongoing
endeavor because computer technology advances rapidly and usage habits change
accordingly. A myriad of Internet applications have been developed in recent
years for different purposes. Applications that are developed for non-academic
purposes are more inclined towards socialization and entertainment. Higher secondary
students in different fields of study need to be aware of this so that the
amount time spent browsing Internet can be utilized wisely and profitably. This
study indicates that there is no significant difference among the respondent’s
family monthly income and class study with internet addiction. There is no significant difference between
type of family, gender and domicile with internet addiction. There is no
significant relationship between age, birth order and no. of siblings and
internet addiction. Besides that, the Internet should be a medium for students
to communicate with their teachers and friends. The need to access Internet for
academic purposes is important. Many researchers have  found evidences showing that that accessing the
Internet, especially for academic projects, contributes significantly to higher
academic performance.

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