Media Screen Addiction Essay

When most people think of addiction, they think of crack heads and alcoholics. Although those are the most common types of addiction, there are also more unusual things. Addiction is a psychological and bodily dependence on a substance or practice which is beyond voluntary control. In a sense, every person has a form of addiction. Weather to caffeine, or food, or cleaning, they are all small kinds of addiction. One addiction that is spreading faster everyday and is gaining a lot of attention is media screen addiction.

With technology in today’s day and age, communication and work can be done virtually anywhere in the world. With access to people at all times through the use of media screens it creates a serious problem. A media screen addict can be described as a person who is always on the phone, every minute of every day, and who cannot live their life without the use of their cell phone. They must always be up to date with every news story, decision, or shift their company formulates.

When someone becomes so attached to their media screens they rule their lives. When a media screen addict is forced to go without their screens for more than a few hours they will begin to suffer from “withdrawal” like symptoms, as they feel they are being cut off from the world, and everyone they must be in contact with. Some people believe that social media is useful because people have a use for it and that doesn’t make it addictive.

Author Nicholas G. Carr refuses media screen addiction claiming, “There’s nothing unusual about this. We routinely become dependent on popular, useful technologies. If people were required to live without their cars or their indoor plumbing for a day, many of them would probably resort to the language of addiction to describe their predicament. I know that, after a few hours, I’d be seriously jonesing for that toilet.

What’s important is to be able to see what’s happening as we adapt to a new technology – and the problem with the addiction metaphor is that it makes it too easy to avert our eyes (Car 2010). ” Carr also goes on to express his observations on our personal responsibility in this condition he deduces that “The addiction metaphor also distorts the nature of technological change by suggesting that our use of a technology stems from a purely personal choice – like the choice to smoke or to drink.

An inability to control that choice becomes, in this view, simply a personal failing. But while it’s true that, in the end, we’re all responsible for how we spend our time, it’s an oversimplification to argue that we’re free “to choose” whether and how we use computers and cell phones, as if social norms, job expectations, familial responsibilities, and other external pressures had nothing to do with it (Car 2010). ” Tolerance and withdrawal are the two identifying elements of addiction.

Media screen addiction is just like any other addiction by definition because it effects the three key cycles of addiction: emotional, physical, and mental. Because addiction shows proof of these elements that are used to help identify any other type of addiction screen addiction is just as much of an addiction as anything else classified as an addiction with these underlying elements by researchers. We’ve reached a point, in other words, where it’s more likely than not that we’re looking into a screen at any given moment when we’re awake.

Evidence of media screens being like an addiction all tell-tell signs of its use being addictive is presented here from the American Psychiatric Association. Clinicians use the most recent diagnostic criteria published in scientific journal to diagnose media screen addiction. ” Objective criteria are based on the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV-TR), which lists the symptoms of addiction for substance and gambling addictions. The most commonly accepted current modern system of diagnosis is that published by the American Psychiatric Association, in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV) This uses the term substance dependence instead of ‘addiction’ and defines it as follows:

DSM-IV Criteria for Substance Dependence (American Psychiatric Association, 1994) A maladaptive pattern of substance abuse, leading to clinically significant impairment or distress, as manifested by three (or more) of the following, occurring at any time in the same 12-month period: Tolerance, as defined by either of the following: A need for markedly increased amount of the substance to achieve intoxication or desired effect. (b) Markedly diminished effect with continued use of the same amount of the substance. (2) Withdrawal, as defined by either of the following: (a) The characteristic withdrawal syndrome for the substance. (b) The same (or a closely related) substance is taken to relieve or avoid withdrawal symptoms. (3) The substance is often taken in larger amounts or over a longer period than was intended. (4) There is a persistent desire or unsuccessful efforts to cut down or control substance use. (5) A reat deal of time is spent in activities to obtain the substance (e. g. visiting multiple doctors or driving long distances), use the substance (e. g. chain-smoking), or recover from its effects. (6) Important social, occupational, or recreational activities are given up or reduced because of substance use.

(7) The substance use is continued despite knowledge of having a persistent or recurrent physical or psychological problem that is likely to have been caused or exacerbated by the substance (e. g. current cocaine use despite recognition of cocaine-induced depression or continued drinking despite recognition that an ulcer was made worse by alcohol consumption) (American Psychiatric Association). Teens, Kids, And adults are more prone to become addicted to media screens because they have more access to new technology and gadgets like video games, cell phones, and laptop computers .

Two schools of thought have emerged: those authors who believe that Internet addiction merits classification as a new or emerging psychiatric disorder in its own right, and those who define certain individuals as having problematic Internet use in relation to specific online activities, such as gambling, email or pornography. This addiction is defined shortly as being addicted to media screens of any kind such as cell phones, TV’s, and computers. As one can see there are many cases that claim media screens are indeed addictive and there are also other claims that refute it being a “real” addiction.

The problem of media screen addiction is not very noticeable now and that’s why not many people are taking it seriously, but what these people are failing to see is the connection between the very rapid growth of these screens and the addiction problem. It is really simple logic the bigger media screens get the more users there will be which will lead to a bigger number of addicts that can have their lives being corrupted by this behavior.

Works Cited

Car, Nicholas. “Not addiction; dependency. ” Rough Type. 14 MAY 201. ; http://www. roughtype. com/archives/2010/05/not_addiction_d. php;. American Psychiatric Association. “Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders” (4th Edition – Text Revision), Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Association. 1994.