We’ve all seen it in the morning: 5 kids at a bus stop all texting on their cell phones. Beyond the fact that nothing said via text is private, there are many concerns parents should have in allowing their children to stare at a screen all day and night. The new mental illness is referred to as “internet-use disorder” in a worldwide psychiatric manual, which has been confirmed by further research.

According to The Sun-Herald, parents of children as young as seven who are aggressive, irritable and hostile when deprived of iPads of laptops are showing clear signs of mental illness because of this “always-on” addiction. Seemingly the ‘real world’ is being overrun by the virtual, where kids would rather play video games rather than go to the beach, play with friends and even eat.

Do these findings surprise you or have you seen it all around you and even within yourself?

Australian experts contributed to the Australian Psychological Society’s submission to the international manual, supporting the inclusion of an addiction focused on internet gaming.

For now the threats posed by electronic device use will be incuded in the Diagnostics and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders as a condition “recommended for further study” in it’s revised addition in what is the holy grail for the psychiatric profession.

Concern in the United States has arisen about possible medications that may be prescribed to children who are showing signs of addiction.

This is not surprising one bit to those of us who are being honest in our evaluation of what is happening to current and future generations. It can be difficult to sleep after benders on the internet, not to mention the bombardment of messages and advertisements all around.

What the study does not discuss is Parents who are not doing their job and are instead watching TV or playing around online. When parents watch TV, kids watch TV (flashback to old anti-drug 80′s commercials). Bad parenting allows for children to sit around and play video games all day.

Most can recognize that controlled moderation should not be a problem once a child reaches a certain age. Unlimited internet and video game use will lead to mental disorders, self-esteem issues and other problems. This is not a doctor speaking, this is a human living on earth recognizing behavior that contradicts the natural way we should be behaving.

Disruption of sleep, back issues and a number of other ailments will arise when sitting in front of a screen all day, which many of us are forced to do in order to pay the bills but then voluntarily participate in the hours in between.

So parents it’s up to you: to zombie or not to zombie.