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PUI RECOGNITION. Research: The adaptation of instruments to identify problematic internet use in adolescents for prevention and intervention purposes

Global concern about Problematic Internet Use (PIN) and its impact on public health continues to grow. Children and young adults remain the most vulnerable group for PIN (Fineberg et al., 2018, 2022). 

The magnitude of PIN has been further accentuated by the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, with increased rates of mood and anxiety disorders and substance use disorders (Hamshire et al., 2021). In Lithuania, there is a lack of standardized instruments for identifying the PIN problem, suitable and accessible to the general public and specialists. The Compulsive Internet Use Scale (CIUS) is currently adapted for scientific use only, but not for practical identification at the individual level.

The aim of the study is to develop and provide widely accessible, reliable and valid instruments for PIN recognition in various age groups.



The research is funded by the State Health Promotion Fund, according to project 4.2.2. the measure "Adaptation of internet addiction detection instruments to the general public for the purposes of prevention and intervention".


Signed contract no. S-64, application no. 2023-PRO-00087.


The main objectives of the study:

  • 1) to evaluate the duration of Internet use, activities and habits of 14-17-year-old teenagers, the extent of PIN and its connections with the emotional and physical health and personality characteristics (traits) of teenagers;

  • 2) to assess the psychometric characteristics and diagnostic reference points of the CIUS** for the recognition of problematic Internet use (cut-score).



For data analysis, the data will be anonymized, providing only codes. No personal data that can identify specific individuals will be collected.


I. Parents participating in ongoing research are informed by their specified e-mail addresses about the ongoing research with an invitation to allow their 14-17-year-old children to participate in an electronic survey.

II. Study researchers visit 8-11 grade students in different Lithuanian schools from at least three regions, invite students to participate in the survey and distribute envelopes with informed consent forms to parents.

III. An electronic survey of 14-17-year-old teenagers is taking place, data are transferred from the electronic system to external media protected by a password.

We are very grateful to the children and parents who agreed to take part in the project - your contribution is very important in developing research-based knowledge and recommendations for professionals.

There will be PROJECT RESULTS 

* This study is part of the study "Adaptation of instruments for the recognition of problematic Internet use to the general public for the purposes of prevention and intervention" (implemented by the Lithuanian University of Health Sciences and Vilnius University).

** About CIUS questionnaires:

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