The Impact of the Internet in Twenty-First Century Addictions: An Overview

The Impact of the Internet in Twenty-First Century Addictions: An Overview

Shilpa Suresh Bisen (Visvesvaraya National Institute of Technology Nagpur, India) and Yogesh Deshpande (Visvesvaraya National Institute of Technology Nagpur, India)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-8900-6.ch025
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In the era of digital technology, the internet has its significant role in sprouting vulnerability toward the different form of addictions and psychiatric disorders as well as providing the platform to manage them effectively. The internet provides ready access to illicit drugs, nonprescription medications which facilitate a sale of controlled substances over the Internet without a valid prescription which contributed to the rise of several forms of addictions. Studies have linked the severity of Problematic Internet Use to increase chances of substance Use disorder. Utilization of internet for longer durations serves as a booster for behavioral addictions like online gambling. Web based interventions on the positive side provides a cost effective, readily accessible and user-friendly platform to reach out majority of patients to help them in seeking treatment of Addictions and various psychiatric disorders. The aim of this chapter is to discuss the contribution of the internet in a positive and negative way to develop as well as resolve Psychiatric disorder.
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Internet: A Platform For Illegal Drug Trafficking

It has been revealed in researches that the internet provides ready access to drugs, including prescription medications. A study in the United states, Jena AB & Goldman DP (2011) estimated that for every 10% increase in high-speed Internet use from 2000 to 2007 (a proxy for access to Internet-based pharmacies), associated with admissions to treatment centers for opioid, sedative, hypnotic, and stimulant abuse increased by 1% each, whereas admissions for abuse of substances that are not purchasable online (alcohol, heroin, and cocaine) were unaffected. Due to increase in internet connectivity, an emergence of the new psychoactive substance called “legal highs” has increased. These drugs are specially designed to be legal alternatives to the established illegal drugs (Gibbons, 2012). Most of these are amphetamine- or ecstatic-like stimulants, hallucinogens or synthetic cannabinoids. They are widely sold on the internet without any information regarding safety content, interactions, and side-effects (Schmidt et al, 2011).

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