Gaming Addiction

Gaming Addiction

Authored by Pin Ng PhD

Edited by Hugh Soames

Reviewed by Michael Por, MD

Gaming addiction

Concern about the effects of video games, particularly on children, has existed since video games first became popular in the 1970s. Despite nearly fifty years of concern, however, there is still no clear evidence on the exact impact of video games and what adverse effects, if any, they have. So, while some will suggest that gaming addiction is a problem, others will highlight that games can help children develop physical, cognitive and social skills.

 

More recently the impact of coronavirus in many parts of the world has increased the use of screens by people of all ages, while also limiting the availability of non-screen-based activities. And the ubiquity of screens — many people, even children, will have multiple devices — has compounded those concerns further because the devices needed to attend school or work are the same devices that can play video games.

 

What is gaming addiction?

Worlds Best Rehab caught up with REMEDY wellbeing, widely recognized by professionals as the best clinic in the World. According to REMEDY, video game addiction is a compulsion to play games. However, there is no precise definition, in part because the phenomenon is relatively new but also because the area is so broad and there is not a good definition of ‘video game’. Gaming addiction is psychological, not physical, and formed as a result of the brain rewiring its reward pathways. Addicts will associate gaming with the pleasure that comes from dopamine. In turn the association the brain makes with this and gaming will result in the addict seeking more and their gaming becoming compulsive.

 

The difficulty in definition comes from identifying what, exactly, is the trigger for the addiction. Defined broadly video games come in all shapes and sizes, ranging from an action-packed first-person shooting game to a sedate and thoughtful adaptation of a traditional board game, but both can trigger the creation of dopamine. And how games are played will vary enormously, initially games were played alone or with one other, physically present, player, but now games can feature several thousand people playing simultaneously online.

 

Others have pointed that video games can have benefits for players. Sometimes, these are intentional, and many developers specialize in producing games that have educational benefits, for example setting problems for the player that require specific skills from a curriculum to solve. Other games may have benefits for players because of the cognitive or physical skills they require. Some research has suggested that gamers have improved cognition skills, even though the games played were not designed with this in mind.

 

However, there is growing evidence that — even if further definition is needed — gaming addiction is a problem. Research has been varied with studies showing anything between 1% and 16% of people having a problem with gaming. The longest study so far, in which researchers from Brigham Young University studied adolescents over a six-year period, suggested that around 10% of gamers show signs of addiction.

 

Internet Gaming Disorder is not, yet, a recognized mental health illness, but has been included in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) as a condition for further study. While this does not mean it will eventually become a formally defined disorder, it is an indicator that there is enough concern and evidence that the disorder, or something related to it, will be added to a future DSM.

Effects of video game addiction

Just like any other addiction anyone can become an addict, however, there are some that are more at risk. And not all games are inherently risky, many fulfil a useful function as recreation or even have educational and social aspects that bring benefits. Unfortunately, the business model of many developers means that many games will carry the risk of addiction.

 

Many game developers are reliant on retaining players, either to generate subscriptions or advertising revenue, and unfortunately this tends to result in game design that has addictive features. Early games were usually sold as a single product and the developer recouped their costs that way. Many modern games now run on servers that need to be maintained, and producers have to ensure ongoing revenue. Some gaming industry whistleblowers have revealed that developers were deliberately attempting to hijack the brain’s reward mechanisms with regular upgrades or bonuses to keep players coming back for more.

 

There is some evidence that younger children are most at risk, although the reasons behind this remain unclear. Part of the higher risk might be because their brains are still developing and there is more neuroplasticity — essentially, it’s easier to rewire their brains — or it might be as simple as the fact that they have more discretionary time to play games than most adults.

 

There is also some research showing that online multiplayer games are more addictive. Massive multiplayer online role-playing games, or MMORPGs, have exploded in popularity as software, hardware, and the internet’s infrastructure have improved. Ironically these usually have a social aspect, many young players will meet and play with their real-life friends in them, but research suggests a correlation between these games and poorer health, sleep and academic performance.

Treating video gaming addiction

If you are concerned about possibly being addicted, or thinking about getting help for a child’s video game addiction, there are a number of options. Even though gaming addiction remains a subject of debate, there are several benefits to establishing more control over gaming, ensuring that gaming is balanced with other physical and in-person activities. This can be especially important if you are concerned about a child’s gaming addiction since there is the risk of some the adverse impacts, even if not addictive, compounding as they age.

 

Medication can be an option in some circumstances. There is a link between gaming addition and some conditions like ADHD, although it’s not clear which direction this link is. Other conditions like depression or anxiety, which can be treated with prescription drugs might also be involved in a gaming addiction, so treating these can help.

 

Other options include therapy like cognitive behavioral therapy or group therapy coupled with a digital detox. Given the ubiquity of video games, and the near impossibility of modern life without a computer or smartphone the aim of treatment is not to stop gaming, but instead to develop a healthy and controlled relationship with games and technology. Therapy options help the addict better understand their behavior and addiction, and develop techniques to help control their compulsion.

 

Inpatient treatment is also possible for those who have a severe addiction. Again, the aim of this will be to develop a healthy relationship with technology and devise ways to ensure the problem addiction does not recur. However, the benefit of inpatient treatment is that it is a very controlled environment, meaning that the focus can be on treatment and there will be no temptations to return to previous negative behaviors.  An option is a 12 step program for Video Game Addiction.

 

Understanding of video game addiction is still evolving. However, it is clear that games can have both positive and negative impacts. While it’s impossible to identify who, exactly, is at risk the evidence does suggest that younger people are more at risk and that the cycle of addiction developed by games can be destructive.

 

Specific Video Game Addiction Information

 

Remnant From the Ashes Addiction

 

Remothered: Broken Porcelain Addiction

 

Resident Evil 3 Addiction

 

Ride 4 Addiction

 

RimWorld Addiction

 

rise of kingdoms: lost crusade Addiction

 

Risk of Rain 2 Addiction

 

https://www.worldsbest.rehab/Robotics;Notes-DaSH-addiction/

 

https://www.worldsbest.rehab/Robotics;Notes-Elite-addiction/

 

Robux Addiction

 

https://www.worldsbest.rehab/Rock-of-Ages-3-Make-&-Break-addiction/

 

Rocket Arena Addiction

 

Rocket League Addiction

 

Rogue Addiction

 

Rogue Company Addiction

 

RollerCoaster Tycoon 3: Complete Edition Addiction

 

Romance of The Three Kingdoms 14 Addiction

 

Romance of the Three Kingdoms XIV Addiction

 

Root Film Addiction

 

RoV Addiction

 

RPG Maker MV Addiction

 

Rugby 20 Addiction

 

Rune Factory 4 Special Addiction

 

Russian Fishing 4 Addiction

 

Rust Addiction

 

Sackboy: A Big Adventure Addiction

 

Saints Row 4: Re-elected Addiction

 

Saints Row IV: Re-Elected Addiction

 

Saints Row: The Third Remastered Addiction

 

Sakuna: Of Rice and Ruin Addiction

 

Sakura Wars Addiction

 

https://www.worldsbest.rehab/Sam-&-Max-Save-the-World-Remastered-addiction/

 

Samurai Jack: Battle Through Time Addiction

 

Samurai Shodown Addiction

 

Samurai Shodown NeoGeo Collection Addiction

 

Satisfactory Addiction

 

Sayonara Wild Hearts Addiction

 

Scuba Diving at Quill Lake Addiction

 

SCUM Addiction

 

Sea of Thieves Addiction

 

Serious Sam 4 Addiction

 

Serious Sam Collection Addiction

 

shadow fight 2 Addiction

 

Shadowverse: Champion’s Battle Addiction

 

Shantae and the Seven Sirens Addiction

 

Shantae: Risky’s Revenge – Director’s Cut Addiction

 

Shenmue 3 DLC Addiction

 

Shin Megami Tensei III: Nocturne HD Remaster Addiction

 

Shinsekai: Into the Depths Addiction

 

Shiren the Wanderer: The Tower of Fortune and the Dice of Fate Addiction

 

Sid Meier’s Civilization V Addiction

 

Sid Meier’s Civilization VI Addiction

 

Silverio Ragnarok Addiction

 

Skul: The Hero Slayer Addiction

 

Slay the Spire Addiction

 

SMITE Addiction

 

Sniper Elite 4 Addiction

 

SnowRunner Addiction

 

solar smash Addiction

 

Source SDK Base 2013 Multiplayer Addiction

 

Space Channel 5 VR: Kinda Funky News Flash! Addiction

 

Space Engineers Addiction

 

Spacelords Addiction

 

Spacewar Addiction

 

Speed Run 4 Addiction

 

Spellbreak Addiction

 

Spelunky 2 Addiction

 

Spider-Man: Miles Morales Addiction

 

Spider-Man: Remastered Addiction

 

Spirit Hunter: NG Addiction

 

Spirit of the North: Enhanced Edition Addiction

 

Spiritfarer Addiction

 

SpongeBob SquarePants: Battle for Bikini Bottom – Rehydrated Addiction

 

Star Renegades Addiction

 

Star Wars Episode I: Racer Addiction

 

Star Wars Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy Addiction

 

Star Wars: Squadrons Addiction

 

Stardew Valley Addiction

 

Startup Panic Addiction

 

State of Decay 2 Addiction

 

Stellaris Addiction

 

Stories Untold Addiction

 

Story of Seasons: Friends of Mineral Town Addiction

 

Street Fighter 5: Champion Edition Addiction

 

Street Fighter V: Champion Edition Addiction

 

Streets of Rage 4 Addiction

 

Super Bomb Survival!! Addiction

 

Super Mario 3D All-Stars Addiction

 

Super Mario Bros. 35 Addiction

 

Super Meat Boy Forever Addiction

 

Super Mega Baseball 3 Addiction

 

Superhot: Mind Control Delete Addiction

 

Superliminal Addiction

 

Supermash Addiction

 

Surgeon Simulator 2 Addiction

 

Suzerain Addiction

 

Sword Art Online Alicization Addiction

 

Sword Art Online: Alicization Lycoris Addiction

 

Synaptic Drive Addiction

 

Tactical Galactical Addiction

 

Taiko no Tatsujin: Rhythmic Adventure Pack! Addiction

 

Tannenberg Addiction

 

Tanuki Sunset Addiction

 

Team Fortress 2 Addiction

 

Teamfight Tactics Addiction

 

Tell Me Why: Chapter One Addiction

 

Tell Me Why: Chapter Three Addiction

 

Tell Me Why: Chapter Two Addiction

 

Telling Lies Addiction

 

Tem Tem Early Access Addiction

 

Tennis World Tour 2 Addiction

 

tera tech Addiction

 

Terraria Addiction

 

Tetris Addiction

 

Tetris Effect: Connected Addiction

 

The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth Addiction

 

The Dark Crystal: Ae of Resistance Tactics Addiction

 

The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance Tactics Addiction

 

The Dark Pictures Anthology: Little Hope Addiction

 

The Division 2: Warlords of New York Addiction

 

The Elder Scrolls Online Addiction

 

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The Elder Scrolls Online: Greymoor Addiction

 

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Addiction

 

The Elder Scrolls: Blades Addiction

 

The Falconeer Addiction

 

All information on all Rehabs and Addiction treatments can be found here

 

Worlds Best Rehab

Nick van Breda discusses gaming addiction

Alexander Bentley is the Chairman & CEO of Remedy Wellbeing™ as well as the creator & pioneer behind Tripnotherapy™, embracing ‘NextGen’ psychedelic bio-pharmaceuticals to treat burnout, addiction, depression, anxiety and psychological unease.

Under his leadership as CEO, Remedy Wellbeing™ received the accolade of Overall Winner: Worlds Best Rehab 2022 by Worlds Best Rehab Magazine. Because of his incredible work, the clinic is the world’s first $1 million-plus exclusive rehab center providing an escape for individuals and families requiring absolute discretion such as Celebrities, Sportspeople, Executives, Royalty, Entrepreneurs and those subject to intense media scrutiny.

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Gaming addiction
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Gaming addiction
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Gaming addiction is psychological, not physical, and formed as a result of the brain rewiring its reward pathways. Addicts will associate gaming with the pleasure that comes from dopamine. In turn the association the brain makes with this and gaming will result in the addict seeking more and their gaming becoming compulsive.
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