Caught in the Web

There are articles every day on “internet addiction. This one caught my attention because of this reference to the APA considering internet addiction for inclusion in the next DSM.

The APA is considering whether to take up this issue when it updates its official manual of psychiatric disorders in 2012, said William E. Narrow, associate director of the association’s division of research. If such behaviors begin affecting a person’s life and ‘they feel like they can’t stop, [then] that’s the type of thing that we would start to have concerns about,’ Narrow said. It’s also important to consider, ‘Are there any other disorders that can account for the behavior?’

This is of concern for a couple of reasons that immediately come to mind: dilution of the conceptual boundaries of addiction could have significant impact on public acceptance of the disease model and clinical practices; and a bloated DSM would complicate mental health and substance abuse parity initiatives.