Srp Arh Celok Lek. 2015 Nov-Dec;143(11-12):719-25.
Internet use has increased rapidly all over the world. Excessive Internet use tends to lead to the creation of a non-chemical addiction, most commonly known as “Internet addiction.”
The aim of this study was an assessment of the prevalence of Internet use and Internet addiction among school children aged 14-18 years in the Municipality of Novi Sad, Serbia, and influence of sociodemographic variables on Internet use.
A cross-sectional study was conducted in Novi Sad among final-year students from elementary and first- and second-year students from high schools.The prevalence of Internet addiction was assessed by using Young’s Diagnostic Questionnaire.
Out of 553 participants, 62.7% were females, and the average age was 15.6 years. The sample consisted of 153 elementary school students and 400 high school students. Majority of respondents had a computer in their household. Our study showed widespread Internet use among adolescents. Facebook and YouTube were among most visited web-sites. The main purpose of Internet use was entertainment. Estimated prevalence of Internet addiction was high (18.7%), Mostly among younger adolescents (p = 0.013).
Internet addiction was found in every fifth adolescent. Accessibility and availability of Internet use is constantly growing and therefore it is necessary to define more sensitive diagnostic tools for the assessment of Internet addiction and its underlying causes, in order to implement effective preventive programs.