Internet addiction or problematic internet use? Which term should be used?

Beatriz Fernandes, Berta Rodrigues Maia*, Halley M. Pontes

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Citations (Scopus)


Internet use has increased exponentially worldwide. Although the use itself is not negative, since it integrates several benefits, some individuals seem to show problems related to its excessive, uncontrolled, and dysfunctional use. Therefore, the interest of researchers in exploring this use, when it is excessive and unhealthy, has been growing, especially in the last two decades. However, being a subject/construct treated by different authors with different theoretical frameworks, several terms are used in the literature to describe this phenomenon. Regarding this, this article proposes to present a literature review of two of the most used and shared concepts in the scientific literature, that is, internet addiction and problematic internet use.

Translated title of the contributionAdição à internet ou uso problemático da internet? Qual dos termos usar?
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere190020
JournalPsicologia USP
Publication statusPublished - 2019


  • Conceptualization
  • Internet addiction
  • Problematic internet use


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