Gaming is a popular way to bond with others, unwind from the day, and have fun. However, you might wonder, when does playing video games become an addiction? How common is video game addiction, and what can you do if you think that your video game usage is impacting your life? Today, we will look at statistics on the prevalence of video game addiction and answer some of the questions you might have about what video game addiction entails.
Overview: About Video Game Addiction
Regular game players and parents of children and teens who play games might wonder, “when does gaming become an addiction?” Video game addiction is considered an addiction when it impacts areas of life such as work, school, and social relationships negatively. Here are signs and symptoms of video game addiction:
- A preoccupation with video games that disrupts your functioning at work or school.
- Becoming irritable or feeling intense distress when you are unable to play a game but want to.
- Isolation from others or social withdrawal as a result of gaming.
People may also see a decrease in focus when they are not gaming and physical symptoms such as migraines and eyestrain. If you notice that gaming is taking up a large portion of your life, or if you are experiencing the symptoms above, it’s important to reach out to a mental health professional who can help. You may look for someone who says that they work with those who experience a dependency on video gaming or the internet. Although a relatively new concept, there are therapists and counselors who have experience with this concern. Above all else, if it feels like a problem in your life, it is one, and it deserves to be addressed.
How Common Is Video Game Addiction?
There have been a variety of studies conducted on video game addiction, and the statistics vary somewhat from study to study when it comes to how common video game addiction actually is. One study found that the estimate for video game addiction was 1.41% among those who played video games and that it was 0.53 % among all of the groups surveyed, where various other studies found that the number was significantly higher.
A study that looked at 7,069 gamers found that 11.9% of the gamers in the study met the criteria for video game addiction. This means that 840 out of 7,069 of the participants met the criteria for video game addiction. There are risk factors that can make it more probable that a person will experience a video game addiction. It is said that video game addiction is seen more commonly in males based on statistics. Research also indicates that it may be more common in those with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
Find A Therapist
Whether you’re looking for support regarding excessive gaming, dependency on gaming or the internet, life stressors, trouble in interpersonal relationships, grief and loss, anxiety, depression, or anything else that’s on your mind, a counselor or therapist can help. There are a variety of ways to find a therapist. You can search the web, ask your doctor for a referral to a counselor or therapist who works with your specific concern, contact your insurance company, or use a website like Mind Diagnostics that can help you find someone who is licensed to practice in your area.
All you have to do is type in your zip code into the search bar at the top of the Mind Diagnostics website, and you’ll see a range of providers with various specialties. There are also blog posts on video game addiction and other concerns on the Mind Diagnostics website. Regardless of how you find a therapist, be proud of taking this step. You deserve to get the support that you need, so don’t hesitate to reach out.