Along with the troubling addictions of alcohol and drug abuse, there are many other activities that can lead to serious problems. For many, video games are not simply a hobby or occasional use of spare time, but instead a full-blown addiction. Just like alcohol and drug abuse, the effects on the brain can be drastic for those with video game addiction and the solution is learning about the problem and finding the right treatment methods. Best Drug Rehabilitation offers this information about video game addiction so users can understand their struggles and family members can begin to comprehend why their loved ones are acting the way they are.
Many people discount video games as an addiction because it is not a problem of substance abuse. But behavioral addictions have been around long before video games. The most notable behavioral addiction is gambling, which leads people to deeper cravings, trouble stopping, financial losses, and drastic effects on their lives and families. Similarly, video games act as a behavioral addiction with a dangerous impact on the lives of users.
Video Game Demographic
The scariest part of video game addiction is that it is seen most commonly in younger people. Video games are often introduced to children at early ages. As kids grow up playing video games, their brains become hardwired to the technology and their ability to function in real life is changed. This leads to severe development problems and a dependence on video games where they feel comfortable. Teenagers and young adults can end up playing video games excessively to the point that they cannot stop to engage in other aspects of their lives. As the video game industry continues to boom, targeting younger crowds and reaching out to adults in new ways like mobile phone gaming, people need to learn more about the real effects it can have on lives.
Effects of Video Game Addiction
For people that are spending too much time playing video games, their emotional and social development becomes distorted. By the time many gamers reach their late teens and early twenties they can experience a wide range of problems and are unable to focus in other areas of their life such as:
- Social activities
- Community involvement
- Family time
Without spending time away from games and in their real lives, the dependence on video games deepens and the ability to cut down is more difficult.
Symptoms of Video Game Addiction
While many people can pick up a game and play from time to time, others have a serious addiction to the behavior. Symptoms of a deeper problem can be seen in people who isolate, continue to increase their playing time, use video games to cope with stress, depression, or social problems, conceal their video game use, or experience irritability and emotional struggles when not playing games.
While no one can control or cure another person’s addiction, people can take steps to support loved ones, identify problems, and seek help from professionals. Video game addiction is particularly troublesome for today’s parents as the activity is seen nearly everywhere and typically not viewed as harmful. Parents can keep track of how their children spend their time, encourage other real life activities, limit video game time or computer use, and honestly express how they feel to their children. If a problem with video games is suspected, parents can look to counselors for help while showing support and compassion to their children. No child wants to have a video game addiction. While they may react resistant and irritable over the idea, it is important that parents do not enable the addiction by inflicting shame and guilt.
As video game addiction grows more and more severe, rehabilitation centers are beginning to take on clients and offer treatment methods. Detox programs in a controlled environment can ensure that clients readjust themselves to live without gaming. Groups that promote life skills and creative activities can help recovering addicts replace video games with healthy alternatives. Many programs offer optional groups in music, art, physical fitness, nutrition, martial arts, yoga, problem-solving, creative thinking, and more.
Overcoming Video Game Addiction
While some may not believe video games to be a serious addiction as compared to drugs or alcohol, it can be very difficult considering its early introduction in children’s lives and its extreme abilities to provide endless stimulation. However, like any other addiction, these problems can be overcome. Video game addicts need the willingness to work on recovery, time away from computers and television, and caring support from counselors and family members. For more information, people seeking help for themselves or loved ones can contact Best Drug Rehabilitation.