Everyone loves playing games now and then. For many, video games are a passion. But when gameplay leads to signs of video game addiction, then these pastimes stop being fun and start damaging most areas of your life. Thankfully, a video game addiction treatment center in California helps you get back into real life and push the games aside.
Video game addiction is a legitimate mental health condition. It is not a problem of willpower or self-discipline. Like addiction to drugs or alcohol, your addiction requires professional help and clear strategies for relapse prevention. But what are the signs of video game addiction, and how do you treat such a disorder?
About Video Game Addiction
“Gaming disorder” is the name given to a video game addiction diagnosis. Yes, gaming disorders are actually mental health disorders listed on the International Classification of Diseases, ICD-11.
Symptoms of the disorder include a pattern of ongoing and repetitive gaming behavior, whether online or offline. This disorder includes the inability to control your gameplay, as you prioritize the activity above all else. You also keep playing when you know doing so is causing problems in your life.
Most people who play video games do not suffer addiction. But the impact these games have on your daily activities and relationships provides the barometer for real addiction. Most people suffering this addiction have struggled with their behavior for at least a year.
Signs of Video Game Addiction
According to the American Psychiatric Association, video gaming addiction is identifiable through nine warning signs. Doctors look for these signs and use other health information to make their final diagnosis.
Seven of these nine signs of video game addiction include:
- Preoccupation with gaming
- Withdrawal symptoms when not playing
- Tolerance, needing to spend longer periods of time gaming
- Wanting to stop playing but not succeeding
- Lost interest in other activities
- Lying to others to play more
- Using games to improve your mood
The last two signs of the nine relate to the problems video games cause in your life when you suffer addiction to them. These problems include continued play, despite knowing doing so damages your life. The actual damages are relationship problems, work difficulties, neglected schoolwork, financial problems, social withdrawal, and other damaging effects.
Where to Get Help for Gaming Addiction
One of the most important things you can do for yourself or your loved one suffering gaming addiction is to get the help needed for a better life. There is no reason to wait until your life slips into further disrepair. Instead, seek the advice you need through qualified professionals, therapies, and treatment programs.
These programs and methods include:
- Residential, IOP, PHP and OP programs
- Dual diagnosis treatment
- Individual counseling
- Behavioral therapies like CBT and DBT
- Group therapy
- Family therapy
Comparing the signs of video game addiction to your daily life shows you have concerns about your wellness and future. This is where real change begins to help you seize the life you want. So call a quality rehab treatment center and talk to a caring counselor about options for treatment of your gaming disorder.