A cross sectional study of prevalence of internet addiction and its association with mental health among college going students in Nagpur city

Prashant Bagdey, Hemant Adikane, Uday Narlawar, Dadasaheb Dhage, Kishor Surwase, Alka Kaware


Background: The Internet has become an integral part of life. India is the third largest country in the world next to china and United States in respect of the number of internet users. Adolescents usually have poorer self- control, worse self-regulation, and poorer cognition as compared to adults and are considered the most vulnerable group to the temptations of the internet. Objective of the study was to understand the patterns, preferred use of internet, prevalence Internet addiction and its effect on their mental health status among college students in Nagpur.

Methods: This cross-sectional study was carried out in different colleges across in the Nagpur corporation during the period Dec 2016 to May 2017. Pre-validated, pre-tested, structured questionnaire was developed. Young’s 20-item scale for Internet addiction (YIAT) was applied to qualify for the prevalence of Internet addiction. The 12-item General Health Questionnaire has excellent psychometric properties as a screening instrument for psychiatric disorders in nonclinical settings.

Results: This study of college students aged 17-25 years with marginally high male representation (51.92%), identified 30.69%, 26.60% and 0.26% students with mild, moderate and severe Internet addiction respectively. Those who are having internet addiction are two times at a risk of having poor mental health (OR = 2.28, p = 0.01).

Conclusions: Disproportionate Internet use is an evolving issue among college going students as our study have highlighted that excessive use of the Internet undesirably affects one’s physical and mental health and social well-being.



Internet addiction, Young IAT-20, GHQ-12, Mental health, Adolescents

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