A Study on Problematic Internet Use and Sleepiness amongst Students of a Medical College in Sikkim
Background: Problematic Internet use (PIU) has become a global social issue and can be regarded as an individual’s inability to control Internet usage which results in negative impact in daily life. Individuals who spent more time on surfing the Internet are likely to sleep late night and this further increases the level of tiredness. The present study was commenced to determine relationship between Internet uses and sleep patterns among medical college students.
Methods: The present study was commenced among 149 undergraduate students studying at Sikkim Manipal Medical College. The severity of addiction to Internet was measured using Young’s Internet addiction test. Epworth Sleepiness Scale (ESS) which consists of subjective sleepiness scale comprising of eight items was used to measure daytime sleepiness. Significance of association of Internet addiction and sleep disturbance was done by Fisher’s 2 sample t- test and a value of less than 0.05 was considered as significant value.
Results: The proportions of boys who were pathological Internet addicts (moderate to severe) were 9.5%. For girls, the corresponding proportions were 7.5%. The prevalence of Excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS) was 20.1%. This study estimated the prevalence of pathological Internet using was 8.05%. Present study found an association between problematic Internet use and excessive daytime sleepiness. The association was statistically significant (p= 0.016).
Conclusion: The present study shows that Internet overuse was strongly associated with EDS and other sleep problems in adolescents. Because the number of Internet addicts will continue to grow, clinicians should consider examining Internet addiction in adolescent cases of EDS.
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