Treatment of Technology Addiction
Also known as Internet addiction, Internet use disorder (IUD) or Internet addiction disorder (IAD), Technology Addiction is a fairly recent disorder. It’s often described as a serious problem involving the inability to control use of various kinds of technology, in particular the Internet, smartphones, tablets and social networking sites. But to what extent is technology addiction considered a genuine medical disorder? While the term has been in use since the mid 90s, it’s not recognized fully.
Technology Addiction Clinics
Many countries have set up technology clinics to try to get their citizens off their computers and smartphones. India is the latest to do so, and in the city of Bangalore which is their ‘silicon capital’, the country’s first technology ‘de-addiction’ clinic has opened. India has now joined South Korea, China, Taiwan and Singapore is opening dedicated technology addiction clinics to combat what is considered a growing public health problem.
Technology addiction is an epidemic in South East Asia. In Singapore, 87% of the population owns smartphones. Compare that to only 65% in the United States. Singaporean children as young as 7 years old already have access to a smartphone or other device. At the Bangalore clinic, patients being referred are children whose parents are concerned that their child is spending too much time online and not participating in family interactions or showing a sharp decline in school.
How to Treat Technology Addiction
It’s far easier to find technology addiction clinics outside of the United States. Within the United States there are only a handful of options for specialized technology addiction treatment. That being said, even without a dedicated facility, individuals addicted to technology can still get help. The majority of rehab centers are able to tailor their treatment options for technology addiction.
As a matter of fact, cognitive behavioral therapy and the 12 step philosophy have proven to be very effective for treating technology addiction.
Treatment options for technology addicts can include inpatient, outpatient and aftercare (post-rehab) support and self-help support groups, as well as individual, group and family counseling and workshops for individuals with the addiction and their families.
Since technology addiction is an emerging problem and one that’s not very well-studied to date, the individual should talk to their healthcare provider about what treatment options are available. In deciding on a course of treatment, the individual’s mental health history will be taken into account and what kind of technology they’re addicted to, as well as their personality.
At Blueprints for Recovery we can tailor make programs to help you or a loved one with technology addiction. Our highly trained staff can support you or your loved one to begin your journey of recovery.