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Screen Time

Problematic Internet Use

Problematic Internet Use is not just about the amount of time someone spends on screens.

It is about the impact that screen time has on your life,

the changing of priorities and the damage to real life relationships, that are defining characteristics of a problem.


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Navigating your child’s use of technology can be challenging enough for parents without the added pressure of trying to assist them to avoid the deliberate hooks and triggers added by device, app and game creators to actively manipulate the user into staying online longer.

Substantial research has been conducted by various institutes and individuals, around the use of technology.  However, a single name or banner for the overuse of screens and the internet not being fully established, has resulted in the research often overlapping or being fragmented as far as offering solutions and/or diagnosis.

To start bringing the research together and offer a treatable diagnosis, “Problematic Internet Use” has recently been recognized as legitimate and worthy of further research by the DSM-5 (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders) and within the medical and academic world.

Some of the other terms used to describe research or conversations around screen overuse include:

  • Screen Dependency Disorder
  • Internet Gaming Disorder
  • Device Dependency
  • Screen Addiction
  • Internet Addiction
  • Gaming Addiction
  • Internet Overuse & Addiction
  • Social Media Overuse
  • Social Media Addiction
  • Social Media Dependency

It has also been recognized that internet and device use issues share many similarities in their defining factors and characteristics as Internet Gaming Addiction and Internet Gambling, which is already recognized as a disorder on the DSM-5.

Seeing a need for education around self-regulating screen time, Eyes Open Social Media Safety researched, developed and ran our first ‘Overuse and Addiction’ Awareness Session in 2014.

Since this time, we have continuously engaged in on-going research and have for the past 3 years, partnered with RMIT to further our studies and ensure that our programs are as up to date and relevant for today’s community use of technology.

Our programs are delivered in-school or via private consultation and offer a range of services including:

  • Awareness education
  • Creation of family agreements & technology use plans
  • Navigating reduction in screen use
  • Assistance with applying device controls to assist regulation
  • Social media & gaming privacy & security to protect vulnerable users

For more information contact us here.

Family & Individual Consultations

Eyes Open Social Media Safety’s private consultations are tailored to your family’s needs & including problematic internet use awareness, creation of a step-by-step family plan and assistance to navigate parental control options to create boundaries around the agreed limits.

Broncos Leagues Club Workshop

In-School Programs

Problematic Screen Use – Student Workshops

Eyes Open Social Media Safety have created evidence-based programs, designed to guide your students to understand how overuse of screens can negatively impact their life, reduce their opportunities and increase their online risk.


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The program is fully interactive and engaging to offer students a full understanding of hooks and triggers used by device, gaming and app creators to encourage higher levels of engagement and dependency.

Through a series of interactive surveys students have the opportunity to identify where they sit on a scale between healthy balance, through overuse to problematic use (addictive use).

“Digital Detox” Challenge

After the first session, students are encouraged to participate in a “Digital Detox” Challenge to try to reduce their screen time for a period of 2 weeks and keep track of their success.


The second session offers students an opportunity to reflect on what worked and what didn’t, during the digital detox challenge.

The program finishes with a step by step guide through how to successfully decrease dependency and regain and/or maintain control of screen use, so that life in the digital world is balanced and more often productive or enhancing the student’s real life experiences.

All of our programs can be tailored for your school and time frames.

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