Subscribe to our free daily newsletters
. 24/7 Space News .




Subscribe to our free daily newsletters



SPACE TRAVEL
Brazil's tech junkies seek healing at digital detox clinic
By Cecilia SORGINE
Rio De Janeiro (AFP) Nov 8, 2017


Like many young people, 29-year-old student L.L. loves his cell phone. So much so, in fact, that his studies, his work and even his personal relationships have suffered, and his phone eventually became a way to avoid people in the real world.

That was when he realized he needed help.

L.L., who like other patients interviewed by AFP asked that their full names not be used, suffers from a form of digital dependency known as "nomophobia," a neologism derived from the term "no-mobile-phone phobia."

It is a condition with real psychological, social and physical consequences and is on the rise in Brazil, home to the fourth largest number of internet users in the world.

In September, the student started on a course of treatment in the Delete Institute, the first in Brazil to offer free digital detox to online addicts.

Set up in the psychology department of Rio de Janeiro's Federal University in 2013 by psychologist Anna Lucia King, the Delete center has already treated 800 people suffering various types of dependency on digital technology.

The profiles vary, from adolescents who spend hours playing video games on their computers, to adults who have lost a spouse over their addiction, or who were fired from jobs for spending too much time on Facebook or WhatsApp.

Newly enrolled patients undergo an evaluation by a multi-disciplinary team and answer questions to establish the source of their dependency. Afterwards, a psychologist evaluates whether there is any sort of clinical disorder present, such as anxiety, panic attacks, social phobias or obsessive compulsion disorder.

Afterwards, they are classified into one of three possible categories: conscientious user, abusive user or dependent, and offered treatment sessions tailored to individual needs and the gravity of the case.

- Group therapy and exercises -

The aim of the treatment is not to demonize technology but to allow addicts to use it in a healthier manner.

In weekly group sessions they discuss their experiences. They also are given exercises -- like trying to read a book or watch a movie without looking at a cellphone -- and taught good practices -- known as digital etiquette. The goal is to help a person go from an abusive user to a conscientious one. Some disorders may need to be treated medication.

As well as causing emotional problems, nomophobia can inflict physical suffering on an addict.

The center's physiotherapist, Mariana King Padua, explained that prolonged use of cellphones, and the angle of the users head when staring at a handheld screen, can put so much pressure on the neck that it causes injuries. "The neck muscles are not adapted to this kind of workload," she said.

Heavy usage of technology does not necessarily make a person an addict: that only happens when their use becomes exaggerated.

"Abusive behavior occurs when the virtual world starts to impinge on the real one, that's when people lose control. It's a fine line," said Eduardo Guedes, Delete's specialized digital media researcher.

- Quitting the addiction -

The ubiquity of online technology and the penetration of the internet into everyday modern life can often blind people to their own addiction. Many times, it is the people around an addict who seek help for them.

That was the case for H.B., 24, whose mother brought her to the Delete Institute last August to treat her dependency on computer games.

"I didn't even notice that I had a problem," she said. "You get used to it, it's difficult to stop."

Moderation is hard to come by these days in the largest economy in South America.

In 2015, 50 percent of Brazilians, or 120 million people, were connected to the internet, trailing only behind China with 705 million, India with 333 million and the United States with 242 million, according to a UN report on the information economy that was published in October.

Around 85 percent of online Brazilians use digital media to communicate with each other, while 77 percent use Facebook and other social media platforms like Instagram or Snapchat, according to Brazil's Internet Managing Committee, which oversees internet usage in the country.

While nomophobia is still a relatively new concept in Brazil, it is widely acknowledged as a public health problem in countries like South Korea, Japan and China and is treated in rehab centers.

Both patients and therapists at the Delete Institute believe they can learn to live in harmony with the new technologies.

"I am getting better with the exercises," said L.L. "The problem with intensive Internet usage is that you end up neglecting other aspects of your life."

King explained that the end of a course of treatment does not mean that the patients will no longer need support. "If they feel the need, they can come back," she said.

SPACE TRAVEL
Tech dreams live or die on startup battlefields
San Francisco (AFP) Sept 21, 2017
Fearing failure but driven by a chance at Silicon Valley stardom, young entrepreneurs pitch their dreams in mere minutes at startup competitions like TechCrunch Disrupt that ended here Wednesday. Brian Chae came from Seoul to try his luck at the annual startup scrum, which lets competitors fight for their futures on-stage before venture capitalist judges in a "Startup Battlefield." The a ... read more

Related Links
Space Tourism, Space Transport and Space Exploration News


Thanks for being here;
We need your help. The SpaceDaily news network continues to grow but revenues have never been harder to maintain.

With the rise of Ad Blockers, and Facebook - our traditional revenue sources via quality network advertising continues to decline. And unlike so many other news sites, we don't have a paywall - with those annoying usernames and passwords.

Our news coverage takes time and effort to publish 365 days a year.

If you find our news sites informative and useful then please consider becoming a regular supporter or for now make a one off contribution.

SpaceDaily Contributor
$5 Billed Once


credit card or paypal
SpaceDaily Monthly Supporter
$5 Billed Monthly


paypal only

Comment using your Disqus, Facebook, Google or Twitter login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

SPACE TRAVEL
NASA Moves Up Critical Crew Safety Launch Abort Test

Brazil's tech junkies seek healing at digital detox clinic

NanoRacks launches Full External Cygnus Deployer on OA-8 to ISS

The road to Orion's launch

SPACE TRAVEL
The state of commercial spaceports in 2017

Orbital ATK Successfully Tests First Motor Case for Next Generation Launch Vehicle

Orbital ATK launches eighth cargo mission to space

Vega launches Earth observation satellite for Morocco

SPACE TRAVEL
How long can microorganisms live on Mars

NASA Opens $2 Million Third Phase of 3D-Printed Habitat Competition

Insight will carry over two million names to Mars

Opportunity Does a Wheelie and is Back on Solid Footing

SPACE TRAVEL
China's reusable spacecraft to be launched in 2020

Space will see Communist loyalty: Chinese astronaut

China launches three satellites

Mars probe to carry 13 types of payload on 2020 mission

SPACE TRAVEL
Astronaut meets volcano

European Space Week starts in Estonia

New Chinese sat comms company awaits approval

Myanmar to launch own satellite system-2 in 2019: vice president

SPACE TRAVEL
Plasma from lasers can shed light on cosmic rays, solar eruptions

Leonardo tapped by British Royal Air Force for radar testing equipment

A new way to mix oil and water

Building better silk

SPACE TRAVEL
Astronomers See Moving Shadows Around Planet-Forming Star

Scientists find potential 'missing link' in chemistry that led to life on earth

18-Month Twinkle in a Forming Star Suggests a Very Young Planet

Overlooked Treasure: The First Evidence of Exoplanets

SPACE TRAVEL
Jupiter's Stunning Southern Hemisphere

Watching Jupiter's multiple pulsating X-ray Aurora

Help Nickname New Horizons' Next Flyby Target

Juno Aces 8th Science Pass of Jupiter, Names New Project Manager




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News






The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2017 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. All articles labeled "by Staff Writers" include reports supplied to Space Media Network by industry news wires, PR agencies, corporate press officers and the like. Such articles are individually curated and edited by Space Media Network staff on the basis of the report's information value to our industry and professional readership. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement