Visual Universitätsmedizin Mainz

Media Use & Behavioral Addiction

Principal investigators

Dr. sc. hum. Dipl.-Psych. Klaus Wölfling

Project team

Dr. rer. physiol. Dipl.-Psych. Kai Müller
Dr. rer. physiol. Dipl.-Soz. Michael Dreier
M.Sc. Psych. Lisa Mader

Research topic

The Outpatient Clinic for Behavioral Addictions was established as the first German university research and treatment center in 2008. Since then the Outpatient Clinic pursues the target to describe the clinical picture of behavioral addictions (e.g. pathological gambling, gaming disorder, internet addiction, addictive pornography use etc.) more precisely. Concurrently acquired knowledge is used for development of innovative treatment approaches. These approaches will be clinically tested and scientifically proven regarding efficacy. Therefore, research in psychotherapy is a central point in the Outpatient Clinic for Behavioral Addictions, which has been extended to online interventions. The first worldwide, multicenter randomized controlled clinical trial for a CBT-based, manualized Short-term Treatment for Internet and Computer game Addiction (STICA) has been successfully tested (Wölfling et al., 2019).  By now, this treatment-program  “Internet and Computer game addiction – a cognitive behavioral treatment manual” is used for patient care in a huge number of  outpatient and inpatient institutions throughout Germany and Austria. Concurrently, epidemiological and qualitative research approaches are applied in the Outpatient Clinic for Behavioral Addictions. Further, psychometric instruments which are developed and validated in the Outpatient clinic are provided for clinicians and practitioners to guarantee transfer from research to practice. Focuses of treatment are outpatient care of internet addicted patients as well as ambulant rehabilitation of pathological gamblers. This treatment offer is highly frequented for years. Moreover, an innovative group-concept for treatment of addictive pornography usage is offered currently.