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Teen Health 411
Teen Health 411

Rehab For Internet Addicts

It was just a matter of time, and now it is here - the first treatment center in the United States designed to treat Internet addiction is open in Fall City, Washington. The Heavensfield Retreat Center aims to treat Internet Addiction Disorder (IAD) with counseling, psychiatric help, and other activities to get patients back on track with normal life.

To qualify for the treatment, you must have a problem with gaming, texting, and Internet use that includes symptoms like a strong impulse to use the Internet, withdrawal symptoms if you do not have access, a reduction in other interests or social activities as a result of your Internet use, and impairment in everyday life.

The program is called reSTART and costs about $14,500 for a 45-day treatment program, which I assume insurances will not cover since the debate about whether Internet addiction is actually a disease still rages on. At Heavensfield, patients will receive counseling, group therapy, vocational coaching, 12-step meetings, recreational activities (including outdoor adventures), fitness programs, and will be encouraged to do volunteer work - sounds wonderful - for every person!

Their Website includes a self-test for IAD, signs and symptoms, and a list of recommended books to read.
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About the Author

Dr. Brown is a developmental psychologist specializing in adolescent health.