Relationship of internet addiction severity with probable ADHD and difficulties in emotion regulation among young adults (2018)

Psychiatry Res. 2018 Aug 29;269:494-500. doi: 10.1016/j.psychres.2018.08.112

Evren B1, Evren C2, Dalbudak E3, Topcu M4, Kutlu N5.


The aim of the present study was to evaluate relationship of Internet addiction (IA) symptom severity with probable attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and difficulties in emotion regulation, while controlling the effects of depression, anxiety and neuroticism. The study was conducted with online survey among 1010 volunteered participants of university students and/or amateur or professional gamers. Scale scores were higher among the group with high probability of ADHD (n = 190, 18.8%). In linear regression analysis, both Inattentiveness and hyperactivity/impulsivity dimensions of ADHD were related with the severity of IA symptoms, together with depression and non-accept dimension of the Difficulties in Emotion Regulation Scale (DERS). Similarly, presence of probable ADHD was related with the severity of IA symptoms in ANCOVA, together with depression, neuroticism and non-accept dimension of DERS. Participants were two different groups of non-clinical samples and all scales were self-rated. Also common comorbidities were not screened. Finally, since this study is cross-sectional the findings of this study cannot address the causal relationships among the primary constructs of interest. These findings suggest that the presence of probable ADHD is related with the severity of IA symptoms, together with the difficulties in emotion regulation, particularly non-accept dimension, depression and neuroticism among young adults.

KEYWORDS: ADHD; Anxiety; Depression; Emotion dysregulation; Internet addiction; Neuroticism

PMID: 30195743

DOI: 10.1016/j.psychres.2018.08.112