Welcome to our digital detoxing series! A series on how to stop addictions toFortnite,Facebook,Instagram,porn,Netflix, Youtube,Tinder… Findall the posts about digital addiction. Today, let’s talk about how to quit the gaming addiction.
- What’s the gaming addiction?
- Addiction to gaming, a “real” addiction?
- What’s considered gaming addiction
- How much gaming is too much?
- Some video games addiction facts & statistics
- Symptoms & Causes of the gaming addiction
- Why is gaming so addictive?
- Possible causes of gaming dependency
- Symptoms, Causes and Signs of gaming addiction
- Problems, impacts & bad effects of gaming
- Some benefits of gaming
- health problems
- impact on brain & mental health
- impact on relationships
- How to stop & quit your gaming addiction
- Main steps and solutions to break the gaming addiction
- Best gaming blocker apps & functionalities
- where to seek extra help?
- To Go Further
- How to help someone with gaming addiction
- Best books about video games addiction
- Research about video games addiction
What is the gaming addiction?
A game is a structured form of play, usually undertaken for enjoyment and sometimes used as an educational tool. Games are distinct from work, which is usually carried out for remuneration, and from art, which is more often an expression of aesthetic or ideological elements. However, the distinction is not clear-cut, and many games are also considered to be work (such as professional players of spectator sports/games) or art (such as jigsaw puzzles or games involving an artistic layout such as Mahjong, solitaire, and some video games). Games are sometimes played purely for entertainment, sometimes for achievement or reward as well. They can be played alone, in teams, or online; by amateurs or by professionals. The players may have an audience of non-players, such as when people are entertained by watching a chess championship. On the other hand, players in a game may constitute their own audience, as when people play a solitaire game. Often, part of the entertainment for children playing a game is deciding who is part of their audience and who is a player.
Addiction to gaming, a “real” addiction?
Officially an addiction?
First, let’s have a look to the DSM-5,the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. Does it includes gaming addiction?
There is no entry for “gaming addiction” in the DSM-5, the most recent edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.
So what means “gaming addiction”?
Gaming addiction is a term used to describe an excessive, unhealthy preoccupation with video games. Gaming addiction is similar to other types of addiction, such as gambling addiction, in that it is characterized by an inability to control one’s impulses and a tendency to engage in the behavior to excess. Gaming addiction can lead to social isolation, depression, and other mental health problems.
What is considered gaming addiction?
- 1. Preoccupation with gaming to the point where it interferes with other aspects of daily life.
- 2. An inability to control gaming habits, leading to excessive gaming despite negative consequences.
- 3. Continuation of gaming despite negative consequences, such as financial problems or social isolation.
- 4. Escalation of gaming habits, such as playing for longer periods of time or spending more money on games.
- 5. withdrawl symptoms when gaming is taken away, such as irritability, anxiety, or depression.
How much gaming is too much?
This is a difficult question to answer as it varies from person to person. Some people can game for hours on end and not feel any negative effects, while others may start to feel restless and irritable after only a short period of time. If you start to feel like you’re losing track of time or neglecting other important aspects of your life, then it might be time to cut back on your gaming.
Some video games addiction facts & statistics
Video game addiction, also known as gaming disorder, is a relatively new phenomenon and the statistics vary depending on the source and definition of addiction. Here are some statistics related to video game addiction:
1. According to a survey conducted by the Entertainment Software Association, 65% of American adults play video games, and the average age of a video gamer is 35 years old.
2. According to a study published in the Journal of Adolescent Health, approximately 8.5% of adolescents in the United States meet the criteria for video game addiction.
3. The World Health Organization (WHO) included gaming disorder as a diagnosable conditionin the 11th Revision of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-11.. The WHO estimates that gaming disorder affects 3-4% of gamers.
4. According to a study published in the Journal of Medical Internet Research, gamers who play for more than 40 hours per week are more likely to report depression, anxiety, and lower overall life satisfaction.
5. A study conducted by the University of Oxford found that playing video games for less than an hour per day was associated with higher levels of well-being, while those who played for more than three hours per day had lower levels of well-being.
It is important to note that not all video game usage is considered addiction, and many people are able to enjoy video games in a healthy and balanced way.
Is the gaming addiction widespread?
Yes, there are many people who are addicted to gaming. According to a report by the World Health Organization, gaming disorder is a recognized mental health condition that affects a significant number of people worldwide. The exact number of people who are addicted to gaming is difficult to determine, but studies suggest that between 1-10% of gamers may experience addiction. Factors that contribute to gaming addiction include excessive gaming, neglect of other important aspects of life, and difficulty in controlling gaming behavior.
Symptoms, Causes and Signs of gaming addiction
Why is gaming so addictive?
Some people may be more prone to addiction than others, but there are a number of reasons why gaming can be addictive. Games are designed to be engaging and rewarding, and can offer a sense of escapism from real life. They can also be social experiences, which can make them more addictive for some people.
Possible causes of gaming dependency
The causes of gaming addiction vary from person to person. Some people may be more prone to addiction because of their personality type or because they have other addictions. Other people may become addicted to gaming because it is a way to escape from their problems or because it is a way to relieve boredom.
Signs & Symptoms of gaming addiction
Now let’s see if you have the gaming addiction problem.
- 1. You would rather play video games than go outside and socialize.
- 2. You spend more time playing video games than you do sleeping.
- 3. You think about video games even when you’re not playing them.
- 4. You’re willing to spend money on gaming accessories and in-game items.
- 5. You get angry or upset when you can’t play video games.
- 6. You neglect your personal hygiene and health in favor of gaming.
- 7. Your relationships with family and friends have suffered because of your gaming addiction.
Problems, impacts & bad effects of gaming: should you quit?
What are some benefits of gaming
Some people might say that gaming is a great way to relieve boredom or stress, while others might say that it helps them to improve their hand-eye coordination. There are a number of reasons why gaming can be beneficial, but ultimately it comes down to what the individual enjoys about it.But at the opposite, what can be some gaming addiction problems addicts suffer from?
general health problems
There are many potential health effects of gaming, both positive and negative. On the positive side, gaming can improve coordination, increase problem-solving skills, and increase mental agility. On the negative side, gaming can lead to carpal tunnel syndrome, headaches, eye strain, and social isolation.
gaming and sleep disorder
Yes, excessive gaming can lead to sleep disorders or sleep problems. Gaming can stimulate the brain and make it difficult for people to fall asleep, especially if they are playing games close to bedtime. The bright screens of gaming devices also emit blue light, which can disrupt the body’s natural production of melatonin, a hormone that regulates sleep.
Additionally, gaming addiction can cause individuals to prioritize gaming over getting adequate sleep, leading to chronic sleep deprivation and other health problems. It is important to limit gaming time and establish healthy sleep habits to prevent sleep disorders and sleep problems.
gaming affecting your brain & mental health: bad for brain and mental health?
Some effects of gaming on your brain
- 1. Gaming can lead to addiction, which can negatively impact brain function.
- 2. Gaming can cause brain damage, as well as problems with mental health.
- 3. Gaming can lead to social isolation and loneliness, which can impact brain function.
- 4. Gaming can cause problems with sleep, which can impact brain function.
- 5. Gaming can impact school or work performance, as well as personal relationships.
Some effects of gaming on your mental health
- 1. Gaming can lead to social isolation and withdrawal from real-life social interactions.
- 2. Gaming can lead to mental health problems such as anxiety, depression, and social anxiety disorder.
- 3. Gaming can cause sleep problems, including insomnia.
- 4. Gaming can increase aggressive thoughts and behaviors, and violence in some cases.
- 5. Gaming can lead to an addiction, which can cause serious negative consequences in a person’s life.
Does gaming cause stress and anxiety?
Yes, gaming can cause stress or anxiety in some individuals. This can happen for a variety of reasons, such as:
- 1. Game difficulty: If a game is too difficult, it can cause stress and frustration, especially if the player is unable to progress through the game.
- 2. Competition: Multiplayer games can be particularly stressful when players are competing against each other, and losing can cause feelings of anxiety.
- 3. Addiction: If a player becomes addicted to gaming, they may experience stress and anxiety when they are unable to play.
- 4. Social pressure: Gaming can be a social activity, and players may feel pressure to keep up with friends or online communities, which can cause stress and anxiety.
- 5. Content: Certain types of games, such as horror or survival games, can be particularly anxiety-inducing due to their content.
It’s important to note that while gaming can cause stress or anxiety, it can also have positive effects on mental health, such as reducing stress and improving mood. It’s all about finding a balance and knowing when to take breaks.
Can gaming addiction lead to sadness and depression?
Yes, gaming addiction can lead to sadness and depression. Excessive gaming can lead to social isolation, lack of physical activity, poor sleep patterns, and neglect of other important responsibilities, all of which can contribute to feelings of sadness and depression.
Additionally, gaming addiction can cause changes in brain chemistry, leading to imbalances that can contribute to depression and other mental health disorders. It is important to seek help if you or someone you know is struggling with gaming addiction and its potential effects on mental health.
Dopamine and gaming
Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that is released in the brain in response to rewarding experiences, such as achieving a goal, receiving compliments, or winning a game. Gaming can trigger the release of dopamine in the brain, which can create a sense of pleasure and satisfaction. This feeling can motivate gamers to continue playing and striving for success in the game.
However, overexposure to gaming and the constant release of dopamine can lead to addiction. This is because the brain starts to crave the release of dopamine, and the gamer may feel the need to keep playing in order to achieve that feeling of pleasure and satisfaction.
Overall, dopamine plays a significant role in the enjoyment and motivation behind gaming, but it’s important to maintain a healthy balance and not let it become an addiction.
gaming effects on Focus, productivity, attention span, academic performance…
The impact of gaming on focus, productivity, attention span, and academic performance can vary depending on several factors, such as the amount of time spent playing, the type of games played, and individual differences in cognitive abilities and personality traits. Here are some potential effects:
- 1. Focus: Gaming can improve focus, especially for tasks that require quick reaction times and decision-making. However, excessive gaming can lead to distraction and difficulty concentrating on other tasks.
- 2. Productivity: Gaming can be a form of relaxation and stress relief, which can improve productivity in the short term. However, if gaming becomes a time-consuming activity, it can interfere with completing tasks and meeting goals.
- 3. Attention span: Some studies suggest that playing action video games can improve attention span and cognitive control, but this effect may be limited to specific types of games and may not generalize to all cognitive tasks.
- 4. Academic performance: Research on the relationship between gaming and academic performance is mixed. Some studies suggest that moderate gaming can have a positive effect on cognitive skills, such as spatial reasoning and problem-solving, while excessive gaming can lead to poorer academic performance and reduced motivation to engage in academic activities.
Overall, the impact of gaming on focus, productivity, attention span, and academic performance is complex and depends on multiple factors. It is important to balance gaming with other activities and responsibilities to maintain a healthy and productive lifestyle.
A word about ADHD and gaming
Yes, people with ADHD may interact differently with gaming due to their symptoms such as impulsivity, hyperactivity, and inattention.
For example, they may struggle to stay focused on a game for a long time, have difficulty with planning and decision-making, and may act impulsively in the game. They may also be more prone to getting frustrated or bored easily, which can impact their enjoyment of the game.
However, gaming can also be a beneficial activity for individuals with ADHD as it can provide a sense of structure and routine, and can help improve attention and focus.
Additionally, the immediate feedback and rewards in gaming can be particularly appealing to individuals with ADHD.
It’s important for individuals with ADHD to find a balance and ensure they are using gaming in a healthy and productive way, and not as a way to escape or avoid responsibilities.
affecting your relationships
gaming and self-esteem
Gaming can have both positive and negative effects on self-esteem. Here are a few ways gaming can affect self-esteem:
- 1. Positive Effects: Gaming can boost self-esteem by providing a sense of achievement and accomplishment. When players complete difficult levels or conquer a challenging boss, they feel a sense of pride and accomplishment, which can contribute to a boost in self-esteem.
- 2. Negative Effects: Gaming can negatively affect self-esteem when players become overly invested in the game and start to feel like their real-world accomplishments don’t matter as much. This can lead to feelings of isolation and low self-worth.
- 3. Social Comparison: Gaming can also lead to social comparison, where players compare their achievements to those of other players. This can lead to feelings of inadequacy and lower self-esteem.
- 4. Addiction: Gaming addiction can lead to negative effects on self-esteem as well. When players become addicted to gaming, they may neglect other important aspects of their lives, leading to feelings of guilt and shame.
Overall, gaming can have both positive and negative effects on self-esteem, depending on how it is approached and how it is balanced with other aspects of life.
gaming addiction leads to isolation and loneliness?
Yes, gaming addiction can lead to isolation and loneliness. When someone becomes addicted to gaming, they may prioritize playing games over socializing with friends and family. This can lead to a lack of social interaction and a feeling of isolation.
Additionally, gaming addiction can cause someone to lose interest in other activities and hobbies, isolating them further. The virtual world of gaming can also become a substitute for real-life relationships and social interactions, leading to a feeling of loneliness. It is important for individuals who are struggling with gaming addiction to seek support and professional help to address the issue and prevent isolation and loneliness.
Effects of gaming on your relationship
Positive effects of gaming on your relationship:
- 1. Shared interest: If you and your partner share an interest in gaming, it can be a great way to bond and spend time together.
- 2. Teamwork: Many games require teamwork, which can help you develop communication and problem-solving skills as a couple.
- 3. Stress relief: Gaming can be a great stress reliever for both of you, and playing together can help you both relax and unwind.
- 4. Increased intimacy: Playing games together can increase intimacy and strengthen your emotional connection.
Negative effects of gaming on your relationship:
- 1. Addiction: Gaming addiction can take a toll on your relationship if one partner is excessively playing and neglecting other important aspects of the relationship.
- 2. Time management: If one partner spends too much time gaming, it can lead to neglect of other important aspects of the relationship, such as quality time spent together.
- 3. Conflict: Some games can be competitive and lead to conflicts between partners, especially if one partner is more skilled at the game than the other.
- 4. Lack of communication: If gaming becomes the primary way that you and your partner spend time together, it can lead to a lack of communication and emotional distance in the relationship.
How To Stop & quit Your gaming Addiction
Finally you think you are addicted to gaming and you are wondering how to quit it? How to break and overcome your cravings for gaming?
Here are the best solutions, steps, supports, resources and help you can get to treat your gaming addiction.
Main steps and solutions to break the gaming addiction
The main steps to get rid of gaming addiction are:
- 1. Recognize that you have a problem.
- 2. Set realistic goals for yourself.
- 3. Make a plan to change your behavior.
- 4. Stick to your plan.
- 5. Seek help from a professional if necessary.
Actually, that’s what most documentation out there is about… However, quitting a digital addiction can be a bit trickier than that.
So our team, after testing many ways, designed a bulletproof way to overcome them. Here are some clear and practical steps that are very powerful to quit a digital addiction, including gaming:
1. Purge temptations: Get rid of gaming
First, cleaning your life from temptations is much easier than resisting to them. Disable or delete your gaming accounts, change the password and hide it somewhere you can’t access easily, keep your phone / computer far away… Out of sight out of mind.
Here is a video from our course the The Digital Purge. on how to add resistance to your temptations, so you become so lazy to engage with them that you give them up: