Study says Internet addiction is caused by a gene mutation
Human beings have about 25,000 genes which make up the cells in our DNA. Often times through genetic mutations, our DNA is defected causing different things to happen in the human body. No, I am not talking about mutants like the X-Men, but real disorders like Cystic Fibrosis or Down Syndrome. Genetic mutations can also cause addictions, for example to alcohol or nicotine. A new study though shows that the addiction to the Internet works in a similar way, through a genetic mutation.
Researchers from the University of Bonn and the ZI Mannheim conducted a study of Internet habits. From the study, they discovered that a number of the participants exhibited “problematic behavior in how they handle the online medium,” and “all their thoughts revolve around the Internet during the day, and they feel their well-being is severely impacted if they have to go without it.” If it sounds familiar, don’t worry just yet.
Through DNA sampling and genetic testing, it was found out that these people have genetic defects, or mutations, to the CHRNA4 gene. Just like with a drug addiction, our brain receptors have been altered overtime to accept, want and eventually need drugs. With drugs, alcohol, nicotine, and now the Internet, our brains are dependent on this medium. It’s actually very fascinating to learn that the Internet works in a similar way of drugs when it comes to our brains; and it isn’t that surprising in the same token. After many years of Internet use, I think our brains have become dependent on it, and without it we may begin to go bath-salt zombie crazy. I guess Toshiba was right after all.