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Background and aims

Perceived stress has been regarded as a risk factor for problematic social networking site (SNS) use, yet little is known about the underlying processes whereby confounding variables may mediate or moderate this relationship. To answer this question, this study examined whether depression and anxiety mediated the relationship between perceived stress and problematic SNS use, and whether these mediating processes were moderated by psychological resilience and social support.

Methods

Participants were 641 Chinese college students who completed anonymous questionnaires measuring perceived stress, depression/anxiety, psychological resilience, social support, and problematic SNS use.

Results

The results showed that (a) depression/anxiety mediated the relationship between perceived stress and problematic SNS use; (b) the mediating effects of depression/anxiety on the association between perceived stress and problematic SNS use were moderated by psychological resilience. Specifically, the mediating effects of depression/anxiety were stronger for individuals with lower levels of psychological resilience, compared with those with higher levels of psychological resilience; and (c) the mediating effects of depression/anxiety were not moderated by social support, although social support was negatively related to depression/anxiety.

Discussion and conclusion

This study can contribute to a better understanding of how and when perceived stress increases the risk of problematic SNS use, and implies the importance of enhancing psychological resilience in preventing problematic SNS use.

Open access
Journal of Behavioral Addictions
Authors: Lu Li, Dan-Dan Xu, Jing-Xin Chai, Di Wang, Lin Li, Ling Zhang, Li Lu, Chee H. Ng, Gabor S. Ungvari, Song-Li Mei, and Yu-Tao Xiang

Background and aims

Internet addiction disorder (IAD) is common in university students. A number of studies have examined the prevalence of IAD in Chinese university students, but the results have been inconsistent. This is a meta-analysis of the prevalence of IAD and its associated factors in Chinese university students.

Methods

Both English (PubMed, PsycINFO, and Embase) and Chinese (Wan Fang Database and Chinese National Knowledge Infrastructure) databases were systematically and independently searched from their inception until January 16, 2017.

Results

Altogether 70 studies covering 122,454 university students were included in the meta-analysis. Using the random-effects model, the pooled overall prevalence of IAD was 11.3% (95% CI: 10.1%–12.5%). When using the 8-item Young Diagnostic Questionnaire, the 10-item modified Young Diagnostic Questionnaire, the 20-item Internet Addiction Test, and the 26-item Chen Internet Addiction Scale, the pooled prevalence of IAD was 8.4% (95% CI: 6.7%–10.4%), 9.3% (95% CI: 7.6%–11.4%), 11.2% (95% CI: 8.8%–14.3%), and 14.0% (95% CI: 10.6%–18.4%), respectively. Subgroup analyses revealed that the pooled prevalence of IAD was significantly associated with the measurement instrument (Q = 9.41, p = .024). Male gender, higher grade, and urban abode were also significantly associated with IAD. The prevalence of IAD was also higher in eastern and central of China than in its northern and western regions (10.7% vs. 8.1%, Q = 4.90, p = .027).

Conclusions

IAD is common among Chinese university students. Appropriate strategies for the prevention and treatment of IAD in this population need greater attention.

Open access
Journal of Behavioral Addictions
Authors: Shan-Shan Ma, Patrick D. Worhunsky, Jian-song Xu, Sarah W. Yip, Nan Zhou, Jin-Tao Zhang, Lu Liu, Ling-Jiao Wang, Ben Liu, Yuan-Wei Yao, Sheng Zhang, and Xiao-Yi Fang

Background

Cue-induced brain reactivity has been suggested to be a fundamental and important mechanism explaining the development, maintenance, and relapse of addiction, including Internet gaming disorder (IGD). Altered activity in addiction-related brain regions has been found during cue-reactivity in IGD using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), but less is known regarding the alterations of coordinated whole brain activity patterns in IGD.

Methods

To investigate the activity of temporally coherent, large-scale functional brain networks (FNs) during cue-reactivity in IGD, independent component analysis was applied to fMRI data from 29 male subjects with IGD and 23 matched healthy controls (HC) performing a cue-reactivity task involving Internet gaming stimuli (i.e., game cues) and general Internet surfing-related stimuli (i.e., control cues).

Results

Four FNs were identified that were related to the response to game cues relative to control cues and that showed altered engagement/disengagement in IGD compared with HC. These FNs included temporo-occipital and temporo-insula networks associated with sensory processing, a frontoparietal network involved in memory and executive functioning, and a dorsal-limbic network implicated in reward and motivation processing. Within IGD, game versus control engagement of the temporo-occipital and frontoparietal networks were positively correlated with IGD severity. Similarly, disengagement of temporo-insula network was negatively correlated with higher game-craving.

Discussion

These findings are consistent with altered cue-reactivity brain regions reported in substance-related addictions, providing evidence that IGD may represent a type of addiction. The identification of the networks might shed light on the mechanisms of the cue-induced craving and addictive Internet gaming behaviors.

Open access