Brief Report: Examining the Link Between Autistic Traits and Compulsive Internet Use in a Non-Clinical Sample

C. Finkenauer, M.M.H. Pollmann, S.M. Begeer, P. Kerkhof

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Abstract

Individuals with autism spectrum disorders or autistic traits may profit from Internet and computer-mediated interactions, but there is concern about their Internet use becoming compulsive. This study investigated the link between autistic traits and Internet use in a 2-wave longitudinal study with a non-clinical community sample (n = 390). As compared to people with less autistic traits, people with more autistic traits did not report a higher frequency of Internet use, but they were more prone to compulsive Internet use. For women, more autistic traits predicted an increase in compulsive Internet use over time. These results suggest that, despite its appeal for people with autistic traits, the Internet carries the risk of compulsive use. © The Author(s) 2012.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2252-2256
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
Volume42
Issue number10
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2012

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