THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN INTERNET USAGE AND DEPRESSION
The Relationship between Internet Usage and Depression
The internet as a technological development has improved life withouta doubt. It is simpler for persons to communicate over long distancesvia internet-enabled devices like instant messaging. People send andreceive messages through electronic mails it is possible to surfthrough social media. People have not only benefited through socialcommunication rather, it has become easier to search and get anarray of information on diverse topics. However, despite theadvantages associated with the internet, internet usage is becoming amajor challenge. Excessive or pathological internet use isprogressively becoming a trend amid young individuals. As a result,individuals are unable to control their internet use and find thatthey have to log in constantly to social media sites, checkelectronic mails, play online games or search information aboutothers, every moment they have free time. This has caused a driftfrom interacting socially to opting for online interactions. Theproblem is that excessive internet use is linked with depression,which is a condition common amid pathological internet users.
The Relationship between Excessive Internet Use and Depressionby Morrison and Gore is an argument asserting that individuals thatuse the internet excessively are more likely to become depressed whencompared with moderate internet users.1The authors begin by acknowledging that the internet is an integralpart of life. However, they progress to argue that it has a darkerside. The article introduces IA (Internet Addiction) as a person’sincapability to regulate their use of the internet, which as a resultleads to distressing feelings. In addition, addicts experiencefunctional impairment of day-to-day activities. It is obvious fromthe study carried by the authors that some individuals developcompulsive propensity to internet usage, and the signs reportedinvolve physiological excitement, as well as psychologicalwithdrawal, which are signs linked to depression.
The argument also asserts that, young individuals have depicted moresigns of depression following excessive internet use. An internet’sfunction, which appears to have resulted in more IA amid youngindividuals are online virtual societies like Facebook, Twitter amongothers. Such communities are said to have a strong influence on thedecisions young person’s make, since they spend most of their timeonline they are able to seek advice from friends made online. Thus,the internet is progressively becoming the breeding ground formysterious, depressive perceptions.2Evidence to demonstrate the relationship amid depression and internetuse derives from a research conducted on South Korean teenagers. Theconclusion of the study is that persons addicted to using theinternet depict signs of depression.3In a different study on UK young adults, the authors noted anapparent association amid internet addiction, as well as depression.Participants categorized as addicts seemed more depressed contrary toparticipants classified as non-addicts.4
In conclusion, the article acts as an additional argument to thecompelling body of proof on the relationship amid great levels ofdepression and IA. In addition, the argument presented by the authorsadds reason for considering internet addiction’s inclusion in theDSM-V (126). Conversely, despite the conclusive research it is notapparent to determine if depression happens prior to internet use, orexcessive internet use results in depressive symptoms amid users(125). The authors conclude the argument by noting that theuncertainty needs to be further studied to make it clear, whichfactor comes first. However, it is indisputable that, pathologicalinternet usage is a warning sign for depressive tendency.
Evaluation according to the ARG Conditions
The A Condition
The argument is properly organized. It begins with an introduction onthe benefits associated with using the internet. The authors are keento note that internet use is not bad, however excessive use is whatcauses the addiction. The article then progresses to note that youngindividuals are more prone to the addiction, by incorporating studiesalready carried out on internet addiction amid young adults. Thestudies are founded on the amount of time individuals spend online.After the premises are presented. These include why young adults tendto use the internet excessively and how it results in depression.
The argument presented by Morrison and Gore is cogent. The premisesare acceptable. It is acceptable that internet use has becomewidespread and especially among the young generation. The generation,commonly referred to generation D, has been brought up in an erawhere internet use is part of their culture. Advancements intechnology like innovation of mobile devices allowing the generationto access the internet from any area and at any period, individualcomputers, laptops, iPhone and the social media, increase the amountof time young person’s spend online. As a result, they becomeexcessively addicted to the internet. The authors argue that themulti-faceted manners, via which a person can associate with theinternet, make it possible for one to feel depressed. It is true thatwhen an individual depends more on online interactions to socialinteractions, they will spend most of their time online. Through theinternet, they are able to become part of virtual communities, whichplay a huge role in endorsing the enhancement of depressive thoughts.
The R Condition
The conclusion is that excessive internet use, referred to asinternet addiction by Morrison and Gore, links to depression. Theargument is relevant to the legitimacy of the conclusion. The authorsconclude by noting that the idea of internet addiction is arising asa construct, which ought to be seriously researched. In addition, itis related to depression, in that the individuals referringthemselves as internet reliant depict high levels of depressivesigns. Persons that depict signs of internet addiction are probableto indulge proportionately more compared to normal population, inonline media sites that act as a substitution to real-life socialassociation. The fact that the argument employs both internet addictsand participants that are not internet addicts, it becomes possibleto observe depressive symptoms in either group, which enhances theconclusions that internet use is related to depression. The authorsare keen to note the need for prospect study in corroborating thecurrent proof and tackle the nature of the association amid internetaddiction, as well as depression. This enhances the relevancy of theargument, because despite presenting what the authors deem to betrue, they also make it apparent what requires more research.
The G Condition
The argument relies on a study that has already been conducted inarriving at its conclusion. In addition, the study also conducts itsown study on a target population, most affected by internetaddiction. One of the researches features South Korean teenagers. Thestudy concludes that people with an inclination to internet addictiondepict more signs of depression. The reason for conducting anotherstudy is because the South Korean research is restricted in regardsto a limited sample size, and just eight of the participants weredecisively categorized as internet addicts. The second research was agreater-scale assessment of internet addiction and its association todepression in young persons from UK. The authors’ objective isidentifying if there is an association amid depressive tendencies andemploying the internet. The latter study also aims at finding theassociation amid using the internet with specific factors ofdepression. Persons that are depressed tend to spend most of theirtime in isolation from social life, which is apparent in theparticipants categorized as internet addicts.
The studies are enough in offering grounds to the argument made bythe authors. Both studies depict the same tendency, which isexcessive internet use will cause the addicts to have depressivesigns. By incorporating researches, the argument becomes moreconvincing as the authors have conducted their own assessment ondepression and internet use. The studies also enhance understandingon what makes internet use addictive, which involves excessivelyaccessing social media for the young generation. Based on theargument in the article, it is possible to conclude that internetaddiction causes depression. This is because as individualsprogressively rely on the internet, they lose touch with their sociallife, and are compelled to rely on virtual communities formed online.Though it is impossible to tell if depression happens prior tointernet addiction, it is possible to conclude that both areinterrelated.
Morrison, Catriona and Gore, Helen. The Relationship betweenExcessive Internet Use and Depression: A Questionnaire-Based Studyof 1,319 Young People and Adults. Psychopathology 43 (2010):121-126.
1 Catriona, Morrison and Helen Gore. The Relationship between Excessive Internet Use and Depression: A Questionnaire-Based Study of 1,319 Young People and Adults. Psychopathology 43 (2010): 122.
2 Ibid, 123
3 Ibid, 122
4 Ibid, 125