We all know the cliché of someone who practically turns into a zombie playing video games. They play for hours and hours on end — often to the detriment of work, school, and relationships. When video games start negatively affecting other aspects of your life, it may be time to seek some help.
For many, the idea of being addicted to video games doesn’t seem possible. In fact, the WHO only added video gaming as a disorder to its medical reference book in 2018. It has even been proposed as an addition to the American Psychiatry Association’s manual (DSM-5). Video and internet gaming addiction is a real issue and Ascend Healthcare is here to help with our process disorders treatment program.
Video Games and Process Disorders
Games are designed to be addicting. They grab your attention with unique graphics and keep you focused with motivating music. Players constantly want to return to gaming because the challenges and success they experience in games can be much more gratifying than their real-life experiences. Many of the elements that attract people to video games are the same ones that run parallel to compulsive gambling disorders including:
- Paying to Win
- Beating the House/Boss
- Perks to Keep You Playing
- Stimulating Sounds & Graphics
Both gaming and gambling operate on a basis of a variable reward structure in order to provide occasional gratification and prolong play. Some signs that may indicate your child is suffering from an internet gaming addiction include:
- Using video games to alleviate bad moods and negative feelings
- Talking and thinking about gaming all of the time
- Feeling moody when they can’t play
- Progressively spending more and more time playing to feel good
- Not being able to reduce gaming time even a little
- Loss of interest in other hobbies
- Problems at school, work, or home due to gaming
- Playing even though they are aware that the gaming is causing problems in their life
- Lying about how much they play
Worried parents may cut their child’s game time, leading them to become angry, depressed, and even violent when they can’t play. A combination of therapeutic modalities, the 12-step program, and sometimes even medication at Ascend can help children (and their parents) cope with video and internet gaming addiction disorders.
Our Internet Gaming Addiction Treatment Center
Our video gaming disorder treatment program helps your child take steps towards understanding why they are so drawn to gaming as a coping mechanism. The goal is to examine what your child is avoiding and suppressing when they choose to game.
Our team works with your child to explore the reason they’re avoiding school and real life responsibilities. We look into everything from anxiety and depression to socialization to find the underlying causes of this disorder. Observing your child’s social interactions and encouraging social skills developments in the absence of gaming is critical, but we also talk to your child about mindfulness, healthy coping strategies, and setting limits on their gaming time.
Contact Ascend Healthcare
If you or a loved one struggles with a video game disorder, help is available at our through video gaming disorder treatment program in California. Call our admissions team to speak with someone that can assess your situation and talk to you about next steps.