Internet Addiction Treatment

Internet addiction treatment can mean different things, so let’s start by clarifying some terms here.  According to the diagnosing guide (DSM-V) set out by the American Psychiatric Association, there is only “internet gaming disorder” as a diagnosis for consideration.

This means online gaming is not an “official” diagnosis, just a proposed diagnosis in which additional research is needed to better understand.  We prefer to see internet addiction and internet addiction treatment as a “habit.”  Habits are learned, and they can be broken.  Over the course of a lifetime the average person form, and breaks, many habits.

Internet Addiction Treatment: What We Know

However, it doesn’t take a Ph.D. level research team to understand that online addictions are a real problem, especially with today’s youth.  Young people are using online media more and more.

College Students Struggling From Internet Use

53% of college students say video games caused them to put off doing academic work.

Developing strategies helps campers become better students and more self-regulated in their behaviors.  Our program not only teaches young students the self-regulation skills to avoid endless hours of video games, it also helps them become better planners and teaches them the goal setting process- in invaluable skill for any person to have.

In a recent study, it was found that 90% of 9th grade girls and 70% of boys used screens for more than 2-hours per day.  Another study found that the average American devotes about 10 hours and 39 minutes each day to consuming media – 65% of awake hours.

We know that young people are using digital screen devices more than ever, and that the stimulating effect on the brain- and young minds in particular- seem to be behaviorally addictive.  We believe that the solution is not in a 12-step or abstinence approach.  The solution is to learn behavioral shaping techniques used by professional athletes to shape their behavior to reach desired goals.  Learning skills to address co-occurring issues is part of the process, as is providing for a digital detox opportunity.

How Internet Addiction Treatment Works

Internet addiction treatment is best approached with a coaching mentality. Abstinence approaches do not work with digital overuse issues.

Internet addiction treatment is best approached with a coaching mentality. Abstinence approaches do not work with digital overuse issues.

At Summerland Camps we use a coaching approach to internet addiction treatment.  We’ve found that taking a positive approach works so much better than a punitive approach.  We introduce our campers to fun activities like drama and the arts, whitewater rafting, rock climbing, and team based activities.  We then develop goals with the camper in a group and individual therapy format.

Finally, campers are taught how to break these goals down into daily tasks.  Camper soon learn that spending hours upon hours online is incompatible with the work needed to achieve their life goals including work, family, and fitness goals.  By the time our campers leave camp, they are experts and goal planning and behavioral change.  We teach them the same self-monitoring and behavior change processes professional athletes use to adhere to strict diet and workout routines.

Therapy for Internet Addiction Treatment

Campers participate in individual and group therapy at Summerland Camps.  We have a supportive and caring staff that specialize in internet addiction treatment methods.  Also, because we focus on internet addiction treatment, you can be assured your child will not be exposed to higher level issues that they would be exposed to in harsh treatment environments.  We do not accept campers with serious mental illness or psychosis.