Internet Addiction in Princeton, NJ

Internet Addiction

Learn how to use the internet in a healthy way.

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What is Problematic Internet Use?

Problematic internet use is a term used to describe excessive or compulsive use of the internet. It’s different from normal internet use and can be harmful to your health and relationships as well as interfere with your work, education, or other activities.

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We work with most major insurance plans that offer out-of-network benefits. We offer a free verification process so you know your options when seeking mental health treatment in Princeton. Our team will let you know what works best for your individual needs.

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What are the Signs and Symptoms of Problematic Internet Use?

  • Excessive use of the internet
  • Preoccupation with the internet
  • Social isolation due to excessive use of the internet or preoccupation with it
  • Inability to stop using the internet, even though you know it’s causing problems in your life (e.g., loss of interest in real-world activities, repeated unsuccessful efforts to reduce or control your usage)

If you’re experiencing any of these signs or symptoms–or if someone close to you does–you may be suffering from problematic internet use. CTRL Care offers a comprehensive internet addiction treatment program in New Jersey.

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How Do I Know if I Have a Problematic Relationship with the Internet?

You can tell if you or someone you know has a problematic relationship with the internet by asking yourself a few questions. If someone answers “yes” to any of the following questions, they may want to seek professional help:

  • Do I feel like I’m using the internet more than I want?
  • Do I use my smartphone or tablet when it would be better for me not to?
  • Have I tried to cut down on how much time I spend online but failed? 

This is one of the most significant signs that someone might have an unhealthy relationship with technology. These questions can often be compared to criteria used to diagnose a substance use disorder as well.

How Is Addiction to the Internet Different from Addiction to Other Substances?

Internet addiction is not the same as substance abuse. The internet is not a substance that affects the body, and it doesn’t have physical properties that make it addictive in the same way that alcohol or drugs do. You can’t become physically dependent on the internet, which means that there are no withdrawal symptoms if you stop using it for a while (though some people might experience cravings).

You may think this means that internet addiction isn’t possible, but that is not necessarily the case. When we talk about an addiction to drugs or alcohol, we can break that down to the terms addiction and dependency; in that case, dependency is the physical reaction of the body that makes quitting use challenging, whereas addiction is the mental side of how these substances can change our brain chemistry. Similar to gambling, while the internet may not cause someone to be physically dependent, mentally, they can still become addicted. 

There is plenty of research showing how problematic the use of online technology can lead to negative outcomes like depression and anxiety.

While there hasn’t been enough research yet to determine whether internet addiction should be classified as an official disorder in its own right, many psychologists agree that excessive use of social media sites has similar effects on our brains as drug addiction does:

  • Both involve dopamine release in the brain’s reward system.
  • Both cause users’ levels of serotonin (a mood regulator) production drop sharply.
  • Both create powerful cravings for more stimulation after each “fix” has worn off.

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When I realized I reached the point I needed a more intensive therapy program, I called around to many places in the Princeton area. While our area is luckily filled with incredible facilities, there is something different about this one. It even seems wrong to call it a facility. The first phone call I had with them already made me feel welcome, and while my need to attend a place like this isn't pleasant, they made the experience so much more human and conversational. Devin

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Inviting and calming space to explore different ways to manage mental health and wellness. You can ensure that you are not just another number and that your care will be individualized while in their care. Sarah

CTRLCare provides an excellent starting place

The world of psychotherapy can be a confusing, even overwhelming, place for a person seeking competent help and credible information.CTRLCare provides an excellent starting place for gathering key information to make informed decisions about mental and behavioral health care. I'm honored to have been invited to be a client and glad to have their network available for myself, friends and family interested in advancing mental health and Behavioral care knowledge and practice. Alexander

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Elina and her staff are so great! My whole intake experience was a breeze and I do not feel like just a number. Elina and her staff make you feel very comfortable and are great at addressing all your needs and really care about the patient and their well being! I would 100 recommended them to anyone that is looking for counseling or help in the area. I feel like I made the right decision choosing CTRLCARE for my provider and I hope you will too! Danielle C.

Learn more about all our programs and services and how it can help you or a loved one overcome mental health and technology wellness challenges.

To discuss our internet addiction treatment program in more detail, contact our CTRLCare Wellness Team.

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What Causes Online Addiction?

There are a number of factors that can contribute to problematic internet use. These include:

  • Genetics and family history of addiction
  • Age, gender, race
  • Stress levels (e.g., financial problems)
  • Social and cultural factors (e.g., lack of social support)

In addition to these external factors, there are also internal ones that may contribute to your risk of developing an addiction. These include mental health issues such as depression or anxiety; if you have a pre-existing condition like this, then it’s important that you seek treatment before starting any new activity (like gaming). Another internal factor is lack of physical activity; while gaming doesn’t require much movement except maybe the occasional joystick movement or mouse click/keyboard press, sitting down all day long can lead to health problems down the road if not properly addressed now!

How Can My Family Help Me Deal with an Online Addiction or Problematic Use of the Internet?

To get the help you need, it is essential that you tell your family about your problem. They can help or support you in other ways.

Talk to a doctor or mental health professional about treatment options if you are concerned about an online addiction or problematic Internet use. The doctor can also refer you to specialized programs that can help people with these issues.

You might also consider joining a 12-step program. These programs are free and require regular attendance at meetings where members share their experiences with each other while remaining anonymous throughout their participation in the group’s activities.

It’s important to note that “problematic internet use” isn’t a recognized medical diagnosis. It’s more of a term used by researchers to describe a specific set of behaviors that may be harmful to you and your life. This can include:

  • Spending more time online than you intended;
  • Feeling preoccupied with the internet when offline;
  • Having difficulty cutting down or controlling your use of the internet; or
  • Experiencing negative consequences related to your use (e.g., losing sleep or getting into arguments).

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CTRLCare Offers Treatment For Internet Addiction in New Jersey

If you think that your Internet use has become problematic and is negatively affecting your life, it’s essential to seek professional help. There are many resources available to help people with online addiction and other types of digital dependence. You can find support groups, therapists, or counselors who specialize in treating this issue; these professionals will be able to help you find solutions that work best for your unique situation.

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Contact the CTRL Care Wellness Team

Focused on evidence-based therapies and integrated wellness programs, the unique, hybrid approach at CTRLCare Behavioral Health is designed to meet the needs and goals of the individual. For personalized treatment that addresses the mind, body, and spirit, contact CTRLCare Behavioral Health today.