Gaming addiction occurs when an individual becomes disillusioned as the to the proportionate importance of game playing in their daily lives. Simply meaning that it becomes a priority and real life takes a back seat. Gaming addiction is particularly common in teenagers and young adults or those who spend a lot of time at home unoccupied. Individuals who have low self-esteem issues may be more at risk of developing an addiction to their favourite game as it is an escape into a fantasy world where you are not judged by your appearance, age or social stature
Why is Gaming addictive?
Video games are designed to draw the player into a virtual world. They then keep the player in that world by keeping them continually stimulated, flattering their ego and building their self-esteem. There is usually an ultimate challenge that a player is to overcome, but on that journey to the ultimate challenge there are a number of smaller challenges which with practice can usually be overcome and so giving the player hope that they will face and win the ultimate challenge. Some games provide the added attraction of linking in with other players around the world, giving the false impression of friendship and camaraderie. Gaming is all about achieving what you normally would not be able to achieve in the real world. Fast cars, lethal weapons, super powers and skills can all be acquired with a click of the button and player’s achievements are recognised and rewarded.
Signs of Gaming Addiction
- Pre occupation with a particular game, even when they are not playing it they are talking about it, as if it were real.
- Reluctance to socialize or leave the house, unless it means meeting up with a fellow game player where the addiction can be indulged
- Playing at unsociable hours i.e. until late at night or into the early hours of the morning. Perhaps as a result, sleeping till noon, or going into work or college late.
- Showing little or no interest in friends, family or partners
- When not playing the game, they may appear withdrawn, moody and distracted
- Becoming very agitated and even irate is something or someone comes between them and their addiction.
- Neglecting their appearance or not eating regular meals with the family.
Treatment for Gaming Addiction
Gaming addiction can be treated like most other addictions through abstinence and therapy. The majority of our rehab clinics can accommodate and treat individuals with gaming addiction, freeing them from the obsession and compulsion to play and addressing the issues that are underpinning their addiction. Please call our helpline for more information.