Internet addiction and sleep problems: A systematic review and meta-analysis

Zainab Alimoradi, Chung Ying Lin, Anders Broström, P. H. Bülow, Z. Bajalan, Mark D. Griffiths, Maurice M. Ohayon, Amir H. Pakpour

Research output: Journal article publicationReview articleAcademic researchpeer-review

240 Citations (Scopus)


The pathological use of the internet – conceptualized as ‘internet addiction’ – might be crucial in initiating and increasing sleep disturbances in the community. While inconsistent evidence is reported regarding the association of internet addiction and sleep disturbances, the severity of this association remains unclear. This systematic review and meta-analysis were conducted to increase our understanding of the relationship between internet addiction and sleep disturbances. A systematic review was conducted through Scopus, PubMed Central, ProQuest, ISI Web of Knowledge, and EMBASE using keywords related to internet addiction and sleep problems. Observational studies (cohort, case-control or cross-sectional studies) focusing on association between internet addiction and sleep disturbances including sleep problems and sleep duration were selected. A meta-analysis using random-effect model was conducted to calculate the odds ratio (OR) for experiencing sleep problems and standardized mean differences (SMDs) for sleep duration. Eligible studies (N = 23) included 35,684 participants. The overall pooled OR of having sleep problems if addicted to the internet was 2.20 (95% CI: 1.77–2.74). Additionally, the overall pooled SMDs for sleep duration for the IA group compared to normal internet users was −0.24 (95% CI: −0.38, −0.10). Results of the meta-analysis revealed a significant OR for sleep problems and a significant reduced sleep duration among individuals addicted to the internet.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)51-61
Number of pages11
JournalSleep Medicine Reviews
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2019


  • Internet addiction
  • Meta-analysis
  • Problematic internet use
  • Sleep problems
  • Systematic review

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Physiology (medical)


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