Firm steps to tackle internet addiction taken by China

Chinese government has decided to take firm steps to save its youth from the clutches of internet addiction. A survey showed that 42 percent of youths in the Communist nation "felt" addicted to the Web.

China will soon officially recognize internet addiction as a clinical disease. Special psychiatric units will be established in Chinese hospitals to treat internet addicts. The government has tried to check "problematic" internet users by incorporating software into games which kicks players off after five hours.

Psychologists have drawn a manual after studying 1,300 "problematic" internet users.

According to media, the Chinese Ministry of Health is now expected to approve a manual which reckons lingering online for over six hours a day – for purposes which are neither work nor study related – and feelings of stress when unable to get online, are two of the most telling symptoms of Internet Addiction Disorder (IAD).

Other symptoms of internet addiction are excessive online gaming, frequently watching Internet pr0n, and spending ridiculous amounts of time social not-working.

Tao Ran, an expert at Beijing's Military General Hospital, which drew up the diagnosis, said that eighty percent of addicts can be cured with treatment, which usually lasts about three months.

Gao Wenbin, a researcher with the psychology institute of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, said Chinese youths were finding refuge online from the pressures of being the only child in the family. He added that most children in China are the only ones in their families. They are told only to study hard, but no one really cares about their needs.