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Problematic Internet Usage and Immune Function.

Reed P, Vile R, Osborne LA, Romano M, Truzoli R - PLoS ONE (2015)

Bottom Line: Problematic internet use has been associated with a variety of psychological comorbidities, but it relationship with physical illness has not received the same degree of investigation.This relationship between problematic internet use and reduced immune function was found to be independent of the impact of the co-morbidities.It is suggested that the negative relationship between level of problematic internet use and immune function may be mediated by levels of stress produced by such internet use, and subsequent sympathetic nervous activity, which related to immune-supressants, such as cortisol.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Swansea University, Swansea, United Kingdom.

ABSTRACT
Problematic internet use has been associated with a variety of psychological comorbidities, but it relationship with physical illness has not received the same degree of investigation. The current study surveyed 505 participants online, and asked about their levels of problematic internet usage (Internet Addiction Test), depression and anxiety (Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scales), social isolation (UCLA Loneliness Questionnaire), sleep problems (Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index), and their current health - General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-28), and the Immune Function Questionnaire. The results demonstrated that around 30% of the sample displayed mild or worse levels of internet addiction, as measured by the IAT. Although there were differences in the purposes for which males and females used the internet, there were no differences in terms of levels of problematic usage between genders. The internet problems were strongly related to all of the other psychological variables such as depression, anxiety, social-isolation, and sleep problems. Internet addiction was also associated with reduced self-reported immune function, but not with the measure of general health (GHQ-28). This relationship between problematic internet use and reduced immune function was found to be independent of the impact of the co-morbidities. It is suggested that the negative relationship between level of problematic internet use and immune function may be mediated by levels of stress produced by such internet use, and subsequent sympathetic nervous activity, which related to immune-supressants, such as cortisol.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Percentage participants above and below the cut-off point for moderate or worse problematic internet usage (i.e. an IAT score of 40 or above), along with these data for females and males, separately.
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pone.0134538.g001: Percentage participants above and below the cut-off point for moderate or worse problematic internet usage (i.e. an IAT score of 40 or above), along with these data for females and males, separately.

Mentions: The proportions of the sample falling above the cut-off point for moderate or worse problematic internet usage (i.e., an IAT score of 40 or above [62]) are shown in Fig 1 for the entire sample, along with these data for females and males, separately. Of the sample, 192 (103 female, 89 male) participants fell above the cut-off for internet problems. There was no statistically significant difference between the probability of a problematic internet use score between the genders, chi squared = .17, p > .60, Phi = .018. Point biserial correlations revealed no relationship between age and falling above the cut-off point, rpb(503) = -.002, p > .30, Rpb2 = .102, although there was a statistically significant, and moderately-sized, relationship between hours spent online and falling above the cut-off point for internet addiction problems, r(503) = .320, p < .001, Rpb2 = .102.


Problematic Internet Usage and Immune Function.

Reed P, Vile R, Osborne LA, Romano M, Truzoli R - PLoS ONE (2015)

Percentage participants above and below the cut-off point for moderate or worse problematic internet usage (i.e. an IAT score of 40 or above), along with these data for females and males, separately.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4526519&req=5

pone.0134538.g001: Percentage participants above and below the cut-off point for moderate or worse problematic internet usage (i.e. an IAT score of 40 or above), along with these data for females and males, separately.
Mentions: The proportions of the sample falling above the cut-off point for moderate or worse problematic internet usage (i.e., an IAT score of 40 or above [62]) are shown in Fig 1 for the entire sample, along with these data for females and males, separately. Of the sample, 192 (103 female, 89 male) participants fell above the cut-off for internet problems. There was no statistically significant difference between the probability of a problematic internet use score between the genders, chi squared = .17, p > .60, Phi = .018. Point biserial correlations revealed no relationship between age and falling above the cut-off point, rpb(503) = -.002, p > .30, Rpb2 = .102, although there was a statistically significant, and moderately-sized, relationship between hours spent online and falling above the cut-off point for internet addiction problems, r(503) = .320, p < .001, Rpb2 = .102.

Bottom Line: Problematic internet use has been associated with a variety of psychological comorbidities, but it relationship with physical illness has not received the same degree of investigation.This relationship between problematic internet use and reduced immune function was found to be independent of the impact of the co-morbidities.It is suggested that the negative relationship between level of problematic internet use and immune function may be mediated by levels of stress produced by such internet use, and subsequent sympathetic nervous activity, which related to immune-supressants, such as cortisol.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Swansea University, Swansea, United Kingdom.

ABSTRACT
Problematic internet use has been associated with a variety of psychological comorbidities, but it relationship with physical illness has not received the same degree of investigation. The current study surveyed 505 participants online, and asked about their levels of problematic internet usage (Internet Addiction Test), depression and anxiety (Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scales), social isolation (UCLA Loneliness Questionnaire), sleep problems (Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index), and their current health - General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-28), and the Immune Function Questionnaire. The results demonstrated that around 30% of the sample displayed mild or worse levels of internet addiction, as measured by the IAT. Although there were differences in the purposes for which males and females used the internet, there were no differences in terms of levels of problematic usage between genders. The internet problems were strongly related to all of the other psychological variables such as depression, anxiety, social-isolation, and sleep problems. Internet addiction was also associated with reduced self-reported immune function, but not with the measure of general health (GHQ-28). This relationship between problematic internet use and reduced immune function was found to be independent of the impact of the co-morbidities. It is suggested that the negative relationship between level of problematic internet use and immune function may be mediated by levels of stress produced by such internet use, and subsequent sympathetic nervous activity, which related to immune-supressants, such as cortisol.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus