Alcohol and drugs are often the major causes for inpatient treatment for addiction. But one hospital believes that the Internet is another source of serious addiction that requires serious treatment.
This week, the country’s first in-patient Internet addiction treatment center opens in Pennsylvania. The Bradford Regional Medical Center is offering a ten day treatment program for those that have been diagnosed with Internet addiction. It’s a problem, doctors say, that prevents people from functioning in life normally.
Up first for these patients is digital detox. They’re prohibited from using all devices and the Internet for 72 hours. Next, they have therapy sessions and seminars.The fee for the program is $14,000, and because Internet addiction is not classified as a mental illness in the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical manual, or DSM, the cost is not covered by insurance.The founder of the program, Dr. Kimberly Young, says she hopes the program will help dispel questions about whehter this is truly an addiction. She sites when Betty Ford first started talking about her problems with alcoholism.The goal for patients, young says, is not to completely avoid the Internet altogether…but to get to a place where the patient can use the Internet in a healthy, practical way.