SEATTLE June 27, 2011 In today's society where access to media is ever present, many parents worry about what is appropriate media usage for their children and how media consumption can potentially affect them. Two new studies led by Dr. Dimitri A. Christakis, MD, MPH and Dr. Michelle M. Garrison, PhD of Seattle Children's Research Institute, focus on different uses of media and assess how media usage can lead to depression in college students and disrupt sleep patterns in preschool aged children. The results of Dr. Christakis' study, "Problematic Internet Usage in U.S. College Students: A Pilot Study," were recently published online in BMC Medicine, while Dr. Garrison's study, "Media Use and Child Sleep: The Impact of Content, Timing, and Environment," was published online June 27 in Pediatrics.
Overview of "Problematic Internet Usage in U.S. College Students: A Pilot Study"
Pathological use of the Internet, whether problematic or truly addictive, remains a growing concern worldwide. For adolescents and young adults, this topic is worthy of special consideration, as they have been shown to be at high risk for behavioral addictions. In Dr. Christakis' study, in which 224 eligible college students at two U.S. universities completed a survey that included the Internet Addiction Test (IAT) as well as the Patient Health Questionnaire, Dr. Christakis assessed the link between problematic Internet usage and its association with moderate to severe depression.
The study found the prevalence of problematic Internet use is a cause for concern, and potentially requires intervention and treatment amongst the most vulnerable groups. Four percent of the students surveyed scored in the occasional problem or addicted range on the IAT. While the percentage is lower than what has been reported in similar studies, the study demonstrates that problematic Internet usage is more common than asthma on U.S. college campuses, and suggests that col
|Contact: Kathy Porada|