The Nine Signs of Internet Addiction

19 min. w/16 page PDF guide. Dist. by Human Relations Media. 2018. $149.95. Streaming $149.95 (1 year), $74.95 (30 days), $49.95 (7 days). ISBN 9781627061049.
Gr 7 Up—This brief program looks at how teens may become addicted to their smartphones and what they can do to prevent it. The nine signs include getting defensive about device use and sleeping with one's smartphone. Each sign is displayed on screen with a title card, and then teenagers talk about how they use their phone in ways that are troublesome. Finally, a psychiatrist who specializes in Internet and technology addiction describes ways to recognize signs of addiction and how to change technology habits. The teens are articulate and self-aware. The doctor's voice and manner are friendly, and when he uses clinical terms, the film defines them on screen. The suggestions for breaking the addiction include downloading an app to monitor how much time teens spend on their phones, not sleeping with the device, setting limits on its use, and calling rather than texting or messaging. The film stresses that if the use of technology and the Internet is affecting hygiene, relationships with family and friends, or schoolwork, viewers should seek professional help. The program ends on a hopeful note: addiction is a brain pattern, and neural pathways can be changed by practicing new behaviors.
VERDICT A useful tool to start discussions in a guidance counselor's office, but the cost may be prohibitive for many libraries.

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