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Internet Addiction


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  • 1. Internet Addiction and The Brain EITANNEUMARK EMILY PAUP
  • 2. Agenda Background Survey Internet Addiction Forbes article Microstructure Abnormalities in Adolescents with Internet Addiction Disorder The Relationships Between Internet Addiction, Subjective Vitality, and Subjective Happiness Discussion
  • 3. What is IAD? Internet overuse to a point where it interferes with daily life
  • 4. Do you have IAD? (1) Do you feel absorbed in the Internet (remember previous online activity or the desired next online session)? (2) Do you feel satisfied with Internet use if you increase your amount of online time? (3) Have you failed to control, reduce, or quit Internet use repeatedly? (4) Do you feel nervous, temperamental, depressed, or sensitive when trying to reduce or quit Internet use? (5) Do you stay online longer than originally intended? (6) Have you taken the risk of losing a significant relationship, job, educational or career opportunity because of the Internet? (7) Have you lied to your family members, therapist, or others to hide the truth of your involvement with the Internet? (8) Do you use the Internet as a way of escaping from problems or of relieving an anxious mood (e.g., feelings of helplessness, guilty, anxiety, or depression)?
  • 5. General Information From Article IAD leads to decreased volume in certain brain regions, many similar brain regions implicated in other addictions (gambling, substances, etc.) Affected areas also crucial to emotional processing, executive thinking skills and attention, cognitive control People with IAD may have other significant problems in life
  • 6. Discussion QuestionShould Internet AddictionDisorder be included in the DSM-V?
  • 7. Previous Research Neural substrates of online gaming addiction:  Right orbitofrontal cortex (rOFC), right nucleus accumbens, bilateral anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), medial frontal cortex (MFC), dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) IAD in Chinese youths:  14% incidence rate, 24 million youths total  Adolescents with IAD shown to have more impulsivity, lowered inhibition ability Brain abnormalities:  Lower grey matter density in lACC, left posterior cingulate cortex, left insula, left lingual gyrus  Increased regional homogeneity in right cingulate gyrus, bilateral parahippocampus Treatments:  Regimented schedules, strict discipline, electric shock therapy
  • 8. Discussion QuestionWhat are other possible treatments for IAD?
  • 9. Microstructure Abnormalities in Adolescents with Internet Addiction Disorder Chinese study looking at possible brain abnormalities with IAD Freshman and Sophomore in college aged 18 healthy controls, spent less than 2 hours a day 18 in experiment condition, pre-screened to see whether they have IAD or not (spent 10.2 +/- 2.6 hours per day online gaming) Talked to parents and friends on phone to confirm internet habits
  • 10. Subjects
  • 11. Brain Imaging Methods Voxel Based Morphometry  Used to look at variances in grey matter by region Diffusion Tensor Imaging  MRI technique measuring restricted diffusion of water  Produces neural tract images  Calculated Fractional Anisotrophy in each voxel to look at level of diffusion  Range of FA: 0-1  Smaller FA Value  more diffusion, less coherence
  • 12. Results VBM Decreased grey matter volume  Dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC), supplementary motor area (SMA), orbitofrontal cortex (OFC), cerebellum, left rostral anterior cingulate cortex (rACC) Negative correlation with gray matter & months addicted to internet  Right DLPFC, the left rACC and the right SMA No higher grey matter regions when compared to healthy subjects
  • 13. Implications DLPFC and rACC largely important for cognitive control  DLPFC responsible for top-down regulatory processes of cognitive control Cognitive Control  Neural mechanisms for actively maintaining information such as goals, instructions, plans, or events for short periods of time & using the information to appropriately guide and control behavior Deactivation in rACC shown in heroin and cocaine users  Long term drug addiction leads to decreased cognitive control Conflict-monitoring hypothesis  Response conflict is signaled by the rACC, recruits DLPFC for future performance
  • 14. Implications cont… Orbitofrontalcortex contributes to goal-directed behavior  Integrated with subcorticalareas associated with motivational behavior and reward processing  Assessing significance of stimuli and selecting behavior to obtain desired outcome SMA important for selecting to execute/inhibit behaviors Cerebellum: higher order cognitive functions  Working memory and inhibiting inappropriate behavior
  • 15. Results DTI Enhanced FA in posterior limb of the interior capsule (PLIC)  Internal capsule = white matter separating the caudate nucleus and the thalamus from the putamen&globuspallidus Reduced FA in parahippocampalgyrus (PHG) Positive correlation between FA in PLIC and duration of IAD
  • 16. Implications Parahippocampalgyrus  Involved in memory encoding and retrieval, processing sensory info, cognitive and emotional recognition, maintenance of working memory Working memory  Lower FA number could cause all aspects of PHG to be impaired- especially WM  Abnormal white matter amounts could also account for deficits Enhanced value in PLIC  Repetitive motor actions while online (mouse clicking, etc..) could change structure  Interference with cognitive and executive functions, tracts connecting frontal and subcortical brain regions go through IC
  • 17. Limitations Small sample size All freshman & sophomores in college All Chinese citizens Structural abnormalities could result from IAD, but could also be the cause  Need further studies to determine difference
  • 18. The Internet, Subjective Happiness, and Subjective Vitality Three Parameters  Subjective Happiness  Psychological state of well-being, joy, and contentment  Subjective Vitality  Subjective experience of being full of energy and alive  Internet addiction Subjects  328 Turkish university students, ages 17-30
  • 19. Results Internet addiction negatively predicted vitality and happiness Vitality mediated relationship between internet addiction and happiness  If you have high vitality, can still be addicted to the internet and be happy  If individuals increase vitality, may decrease internet addiction
  • 20. Conclusion IAD is a fairly new concept, most research has been tailored towards young people Look at long-term effects of IAD Colleges should encourage healthy and timely use of the internet Too much time spent on the internet can be greatly problematic Still a problem with much to explore
  • 21. Do you think the addictive powers of the Internetparallel the addictive powers of substances?
  • 22. Any questions?