Netolism: are we addicted to the Internet?

The Internet is all around us. We always have mobile phones at hand. On the way to work, we no longer read and reach for our mobile phones. Colleagues at work hold their cell phones in their hands while discussing with us. Instead of climbing a tree, children prefer virtual reality. They want a cell phone for Santa. A romantic dinner must first be photographed and published on social networks. And friends in the cafe look at their phone or at least have it on the table in front of them. Are we addicted to the internet? Can netolism, the so-called internet addiction, be stopped? How are you doing?


Date Netholism is a label for internet addiction. An example could be an addiction to playing games, chatting, surfing, online shopping or collecting likes on social networks. It is manifested by the need to be online all the time, difficulties with regular meals or maintaining hygienic habits. In other words, if it is not connected to the Internet, it is not interesting.

Internet addiction it is less of an addiction than, for example, alcohol addiction, but we should certainly not underestimate its symptoms. By the way, where is your cell phone right now?

If we do not recognize the symptoms of Internet addiction in time, then we or our loved ones may face negative consequences such as, for example:

  • Losing friends
  • Lack of interest in hobbies
  • Impairment of socialization
  • Negative impact on health

Some statistics state that the most at-risk group are children aged 12-15, with up to 23% of them struggling with symptoms of addiction.

What role does dopamine play?

Dopamine is a hormone that transmits nerve impulses in the brain. This so-called happy hormone it is associated with digital technologies that rely on its reward function. It is social networks that use dopamine as an algorithm for creating a habit.

Likes evoke emotions, motivation, and happiness in us. And they are one of the many reasons why we return to the networks. The likes makers themselves in the movie A social dilemma they present how the Internet and social networks are set up to make us dependent on it. I recommend the book for more inspiration shining children, which clearly describes the topic of addiction and the influence of dopamine.

How about trying it differently

If you feel that using the Internet is harming you and affecting your relationships and health, it's time replace reward stimulants in the form of likes for mundane little things. Try reading a book on the way to work, put down your phone while having dinner with friends, and play a board game with the kids. Children can keep up with meals even without a mobile phone, try to give them your full attention or promise paper and crayons after the meal.

For more information on digital wellbeing, we are happy to share with you one of the our courses. You can share your experience within the community Digi and Happy, where you can find specific instructions and how to digital balance.