Saturday December 3rd 2016

Trusted Helpline
Help Available 24/7
1-888-882-1456
PRIVACY
GUARANTEED

Teen video game addiction signs

Is teen video game addiction for real?

Video game addiction is a hot topic. Scientists, researchers and doctors interested in gaming addictions currently categorize problem video gaming as an impulse control disorders, similar to gambling. Some experts like to call video gaming addiction a “nonsubstance addiction”. Regardless of whether or not you can get a diagnosis for video game addiction, there is clear evidence that between 8-13% of gamers develop a pattern of gaming behavior that is problematic and interferes with life. So, yes. Video game addiction is for real. And gaming addiction can cause serious emotional, mental, physical and social problems.

What kinds of teens get addicted?

Video games may be rewarding because gaming can help teens FEEL better. This is actual brain science. Video gaming can activate the transmission of dopamine in the brain’s reward circuits, providing feelings of euphoria or a ‘high’. But who is most likely to get hooked on gaming?

Firstly, there are a few predictors of video game addiction. For example, gender (male) and age group (young) have been found to be strong predictors for problematic use of video games. Secondly, teens with gaming problems who are engaged primarily in large online gaming communities often share similar personality traits. They tend to be shy, have an external locus of control, and use gaming to deal with negative emotions. Finally, people with problematic gaming behavior have been shown to exhibit inattention, hyperactivity, and poor self-control.

Signs of problem video gaming

There are a few signs and symptom of compulsive video gaming to look for. These include:

  • conflicts at home, school, or work due to video game play
  • diminished empathy
  • gaming gives you a high
  • gaming is the most important thing in life
  • if you don’t play video games, you feel badly
  • increased aggression
  • physical pain from too much play (wrist, nerves, muscles)
  • promising not to play, then playing video games
  • time distortion while playing
  • you need to play more games to feel good (tolerance)

However, as an impulse control disorder, the following criteria must also be met before a mental health professional should consider a diagnosis of true video game addiction:

  1. Cravings, urges or growing tension before video gaming
  2. Relief or pleasure after gaming
  3. Repeated gaming despite negative consequences
  4. Failed resistance to an impulse to play video games, even if playing is harmful to self or others.

Teens with video game addiction

If you think that you have a problem with video games, bets are that you probably do. Keep in mind that more than 60% of surveyed teens reported that they play less than 7 hours of video games a week. More on how many video games is too many here.

Trusted Helpline
Help Available 24/7
1-888-882-1456
PRIVACY GUARANTEED

If you are gaming 2-3 hours (or more) a day and are worried that you might have a problem, seek help for compulsive video game play. You’ll need to be honest with yourself and examine reasons you might be using games to “escape” reality. This can sometimes be scary, but it’s always worth it. If you want to talk with someone, just email us or leave your comment below. We’ll be happy to help.

Photo credit: Don Hankins

Leave a Reply

4 Responses to “Teen video game addiction signs
Andrew
4:58 am February 1st, 2012

How do you get past the felling badly and just need to play how do you fight the urge I mean I will admit I kinda have a problem. Because my Xbox 360 was geting in the way of school life friends and my parents grounded me because of it. how do I get a schedule down for my self and keep up with my schedule and just no blow it off :/

Dante
8:53 pm October 28th, 2013

This stuff is not true

Dante
4:31 pm October 29th, 2013

im a gamer and nothing is wrong with me!

Brian
8:47 am March 23rd, 2015

Some parts of here are true and not true at the same time. Gaming is fine, especially nowadays people started to make friends through games, it helps them to develop, having their own community, some of us even met in real life through games. The only thing to worry is when you got seriously addicted to a game without thinking of yourself and others around.
What started the immense addiction is usually not the game but the situation near the gamer itself. School Bullies, Family Problem, Stressful life, work issue, relationship issue. These are what needed to be fixed. Once these problem are fixed a gamer would think twice about how to spend their time. Does super addicting to games worth for them when lives around him / her are lively and happy ?

Leave a Reply

Trusted Helpline
Help Available 24/7
1-888-882-1456
PRIVACY
GUARANTEED