Tagged With addiction


How concerned should people be about the psychological effects of screen time? Balancing technology use with other aspects of daily life seems reasonable, but there is a lot of conflicting advice about where that balance should be.

Much of the discussion – including the World Health Organization’s recent decision to declare “gaming disorder” an “addictive behavior disorder” –is framed around fighting “addiction” to technology. But to me, that resembles a moral panic, giving voice to scary claims based on weak data.


Over the past year, countless children and adults have tuned into the game Fortnite, a free-to-play battle royale game that allows players to compete with others around the world. The game is fun and features some cartoonish violence, which has led many to worry about whether such games are problematic.

Inevitable anecdotes have popped up of some children behaving badly in relation to the game such as the British girl who is said to have wet herself rather than stop playing. Do these anecdotes hint towards a coming epidemic of violent or addicted children? Simply put: no.


In this episode of The Upgrade we're taking a closer look at alcohol - why we drink, what it does to us, and how to quit, if we're so inclined. We're joined by author Annie Grace, author of the book This Naked Mind: Control Alcohol, Find Freedom, Discover Happiness & Change Your Life.


Former Design Ethicist at Google and founder of the non-profit Time Well Spent, Tristan Harris has been making the rounds lately, talking about how technology is engineered to be addictive and hijack our attention. He's pretty persuasive, comparing the lure of your phone to the that of a slot machine.


Some of us can definitely say we have a sweet tooth. Whether it’s cakes, chocolates, cookies, lollies or soft drinks, our world is filled with intensely pleasurable sweet treats. Sometimes eating these foods is just too hard to resist. But is it actually "additive" in a biological sense? Let's take a look at the science.


Most parents wish they had more time to spend with their kids. They also waste untold hours staring at their smartphones. It doesn't take a child genius to see the connection here. If you spend a chunk of every weekend checking social media apps and surfing the web, it might be time to put your children in charge of your mobile devices.

Here's a novel solution. This weekend, let your kids reset the password or parental lock on your phone - without watching them do it.


From the headlines, prescription painkillers sound pretty scary. Some of the people who take them switch to heroin, and some die of overdoses. The problem is so bad that the US FDA has mandated black-box warning labels about the risk of abuse. But at the same time, these drugs are common and useful tools to manage pain.


Your lips are dry, so you apply a little something soothing from a tube or a tiny jar or one of those weird golf ball things. Aah, relief. But as soon as it wears off, you need more. The cycle repeats all throughout the colder months. Are you practicing responsible skin care, or have you become addicted?


Unless you're a masochist and/or sociopath, you probably don't indulge in bad habits by choice. Instead, it's usually something you "fell into" and can't seem to navigate your way out of. This infographic from Vegas Extreme Skydiving explains the psychology behind bad habits along with some tried-and-trusted tips to help you break them.


You've probably heard the phrase "addictive personality" tossed around before. The general idea is that some people are more prone to addiction because of their personality traits. This is a bit misleading though, and SciShow explains why.


Dear Lifehacker, Like many people I've found it hard to put down an addictive game on occasion, but recently it has become more of a problem. Gaming obsessively until late at night and on weekends has negatively impacted my work and social life, to the point where I feel I need to do something about it. How can I battle my gaming addiction?


There aren't many of us who don't have some bad habit we'd like to quit: smoking, sweets, shopping, nail-biting, porn, excessive checking of social media, other distractions. The problem is that we think we don't have the willpower, faced with past evidence of failure after failure when we've tried to quit before.


Dear Lifehacker,

Is it possible for someone to actually be addicted to the internet? I mean, we all love our phones, and maybe I check mine whenever it buzzes, but is that the same as being addicted to alcohol or drugs? I've heard of people being so addicted to video games that they forgot to eat or feed their kid. How much of it is real psychology and how much is technophobic hype? Sincerely, Glued to My Gadgets


Hey Lifehacker, When I have a raging headache and I go to the chemist for some Nurofen Plus, the last thing I need is for some teenager to interrogate me about what I need them for. As far as I'm concerned it's none of their business whether I intend to take them as directed or freebase them in a primary school playground -- I'm an adult purchasing a legally-available product. What are my rights and responsibilities in this situation, and can they refuse to sell them to me if I give an answer they don't like?


If you're a smoker, you probably frequently wonder about how your habit could be affecting your appearance. Just how much older are all those ciggies making you look? This photographic study of identical twins with different smoking histories provides a chilling answer.


The rise of online gaming via MMORPGs, Facebook and video game consoles could be putting kids' brain development at risk and may also be causing serious social disorders, according to new scientific research. At a recent Australian Science Media Centre briefing, child psychiatrist Dr. Philip Tam explained the chief causes of so-called "Internet gaming disorder" along with the warning signs that parents should look out for.