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Nov 29 2008
By: nov2rem Treasure Hunter 8111 posts
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Video Game Addiction: When does it become a problem?

136 replies 1558 views Edited Nov 29, 2008
Video Game Addiction: When does it become a problem?
 
 
I'm sure you heard about this problem from time to time. So what is a video game addiction? Its an obssesion, compulsion, or excessive physical dependance or psychological dependance of video games. Is it a problem? Yes. Is video games to blame? No. Video game addiction is no different than drug addiction, gambling addiction, food addiction, work addiction, excercise addiction, shopping addiction, religion addiction and other addiction that I can't write about in this forums. So when someone has a problem and tragic happens with food addiction or other addictions, why do you almost never hear about it in media? Thats a good question. But when there's something involving video games, then it gets the attention. Video games will and will always be to blame from the media and politicians regardless of the issue.
 
So in my opinion, I think if you spend 10-12 hours a day everyday, every week, every month and not getting paid to do this, you have a problem. If you spend that same amount of time and your actually getiing paid for this like in tournament competitions then thats different. You need to practice in order to win the competition. But you always have to limit yourself and know the difference between reality and virtual reality. If you spend that same amount of time only on weekends or on your days off, I guess its normal as long as you know other responsibilities in your life like other hobbies, pay the bills, school, socially, etc. Video games are fun. I love video games. Whether I can be Solid Snake and sneak past guards to save the world from Metal Gear, whether I take control of Marshall Law and win the King of the Iron Fist Tournament in Tekken, or whether I play Beats on my PSP and use my custom soundtracks in this fun music rythm game.
 
When I was a kid in the early 90's, I did spend a lot of time gaming starting with the Sega Genesis and then the original Playstation. My parents would be concerned and my parents and I had I guess what you call family meetings and explained to me about life and consequences, do's and don'ts, and right from wrong. I guess when I got older, now I'm 28, I only spend an average about 6 hours a week in gaming. I don't know the real reason, but maybe its because I'm getting older, I've outgrowned it a little, or have other responsibilities. However, when I get a new game, then I do spend more time, but thats normal when you get a new game. After you beat it or replay it several times then it fades away.
 
Now its parents responsibility to teach children and parent better and instill a sense of excellence in the kids.They do need to learn that there’s a time to play video games, yet there’s a time to do other more important things in life. Use video games as a reward for doing chores, completing homework or accomplishing something special around the house. Also after one hour of video game play, the child should be required to take a 'reality break' to discuss briefly with a family member or friend what else is going on in the house. Invite friends over for your child to play video games with, so he/she isn't always playing by himself/herself.
 
Now I think the Video Game Industry has done a good job on not only the ESRB rating system (which is a different subject) but also the Health Warnings that comes in the manual. I'm gonna post (some, not all) of examples of one of my game manuals:
 
HEALTH PRECAUTIONS:
Avoid prolonged use of the system. Take a break of about 15 minutes during every hour of play. Do not use the system when you are tired or short of sleep. Stop using the system if you experience the following systems:
Lightheadedness
nausea
motion sickness
Discomfort or pain in eyes, ears, hands, arms or any other part of body.
 
I don't watch his show but this was an interesting story about 34 year old Fred and this was an episode from Dr. Phil's Virtual Chaos so this is the summary:
 

Thirty-four-year old Fred says that his World of Warcraft video game takes his mind off other things, but his wife, Juli, says that’s exactly the problem; Fred’s constant gaming is at the expense of their family. His wife says “My husband plays video games from morning to night. It’s affecting all of the relationships in the house. My kids are out of control, and we can’t pay our bills, it’s just a lot of things. They all circulate from the game. He hasn’t worked in nine months. He says it’s because he can’t find another job, but he’s not even really looking for another job, he’s just fiddling away on the computer.” According to Juli, Fred oftentimes won’t go to bed because he plays his computer games throughout the night. She’s fearful of the growing separation that Fred’s gaming is causing within the family.
 
Now weeks ago, there was news about video game addicts commiting suicide and the media like always, blames it on video games. One is the tragic story of Brandon Crisp and his obsession with Call of Duty 4 Modern Warfare. After his parents took away his video game privilage well, my condolences to his family and loved ones.
 
There was a similar situation in 2005 in South Korea. A South Korean man has died after reportedly playing an online computer game for 50 hours with few breaks. The 28-year-old man collapsed after playing the game Starcraft at an internet cafe in the city of Taegu, according to South Korean authorities. The man had not slept properly, and had eaten very little during his marathon session, said police. The man, identified by his family name, Lee, started playing Starcraft on 3 August. He only paused playing to go to the toilet and for short periods of sleep, said the police. "We presume the cause of death was heart failure stemming from exhaustion," a Taegu provincial police official told the Reuters news agency. He was taken to hospital following his collapse, but died shortly after, according to the police. It is not known whether he suffered from any previous health conditions. They added that he had recently been fired from his job because he kept missing work to play computer games.
 
So what causes this and how can it be solved? There's no real easy answer to this but there's different factors such as low self esteem, defective personal constructs, focal anxiety (which means fear of crowds), lack of information, difficult social circumstances, poor social performance, etc. There's Interventions for these kind of problems. For example for people that has low self esteem, they need a relationship therapy to increase self esteem and reduce hostility and anxiety, for people with poor social performance, they need sensitivity training or communication training or group therapy and this will help to increase interpersonal repertoire, etc.
 
Question time:
 
1) Video Game Addiction: When does it become a problem?
 
2) If you know someone that you know thats a video game addict (friend, relative, or loved ones), what would you do in this situation?
 
2) After reading this thread, did it changed your perspective of the amount of time you spent on playing video games? Why? Why not?
 
 
Message Edited by nov2rem on 11-28-2008 04:44 PM
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Hekseville Citizen
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Re: Video Game Addiction: When does it become a problem?

Nov 28, 2008

Gaming becomes a problem when you turn into "Fred".

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Lombax Warrior
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Re: Video Game Addiction: When does it become a problem?

Nov 28, 2008

Aryan88 wrote:

Gaming becomes a problem when you turn into "Fred".


you just made my day

 

 

it becomes a probleme, when you don't stop.

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Wastelander
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Re: Video Game Addiction: When does it become a problem?

Nov 28, 2008
Any form of addiction, including video gaming, becomes a problem when it begins interfering with formerly healthy daily activities, or changes your mood or behavior when you're not partaking in the activity. I've taken a few university degree courses on this matter (addiction and substance abuse) as like alcoholism or and addictive gambling habits, the FIRST sign of problematic behavior regarding gaming is when it alters your mood when you are NOT partaking in the physical action of it. Ie: You get irritated, unhappy, unfocused when you are not playing. This is merely the first sign in ANY addiction. I'm a passionate gamer and certainly endorse having fun with your console although the OP brings up a viable point in this thread. It can, and does get out of hand sometimes and like I mentioned.. if you notice that your behavior changes when you're not gaming, perhaps you need to rethink your habits. Game on fellow friends and enjoy our wonderful console!!
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Re: Video Game Addiction: When does it become a problem?

Nov 28, 2008

It becomes a problem when you buy games before paying your bills, or even food for the kids

It becomes a problem when you sit around all day and do nothing but play games . I would call my self

addicted to games BUT not to the point that i couldnt give it up to support my family..or take care of my

kids..

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Ghost of Sparta
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Re: Video Game Addiction: When does it become a problem?

Nov 28, 2008

Oh my god, Brandon Crisp? Don't even get me started. This little brain-damaged gnome ran away from home into the damn Canadian wilderness because his parents took away COD4. How pathetic can you get? That wasn't a case of video game addiction, that was just extreme mental deficiency. Natural selection at its finest.

 

 

Brandon was such an hero.

 

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Re: Video Game Addiction: When does it become a problem?

Nov 28, 2008

Question time: 
 
1) Video Game Addiction: When does it become a problem?
 
2) If you know someone that you know thats a video game addict (friend, relative, or loved ones), what would you do in this situation? 
 
2) After reading this thread, did it changed your perspective of the amount of time you spent on playing video games? Why? Why not? 
 
 

I think the first question answers itself.  If something has become an addiction, it is a problem.

 

I don't know any addicts.  If I did, there's not much I could do but ask them to seek help, or offer them some relational alternatives

 

Nah, My perspective remains the same.  I don't spend much time gaming at all.  The only time I really game is when a game drops that I really want.  Even then, I don't really play them that much save for a few hours on weekends.  

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Re: Video Game Addiction: When does it become a problem?

Nov 28, 2008

DeliciousVinyl wrote:
Any form of addiction, including video gaming, becomes a problem when it begins interfering with formerly healthy daily activities, or changes your mood or behavior when you're not partaking in the activity. I've taken a few university degree courses on this matter (addiction and substance abuse) as like alcoholism or and addictive gambling habits, the FIRST sign of problematic behavior regarding gaming is when it alters your mood when you are NOT partaking in the physical action of it. Ie: You get irritated, unhappy, unfocused when you are not playing. This is merely the first sign in ANY addiction. I'm a passionate gamer and certainly endorse having fun with your console although the OP brings up a viable point in this thread. It can, and does get out of hand sometimes and like I mentioned.. if you notice that your behavior changes when you're not gaming, perhaps you need to rethink your habits. Game on fellow friends and enjoy our wonderful console!!

I agree. Especially with the mood and behavior in any kind of addictions.

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Re: Video Game Addiction: When does it become a problem?

Nov 28, 2008
 Yet another Q&A with Nov. Sweet!
 
1) Video Game Addiction: When does it become a problem? It only becomes a problem when I don't have any more money to buy games..... Seriously.... What? You think I'm joking? Ok. Maybe I am a tad bit. Like most addictions, the definition will vary from gamer to gamer and from non-gamer to gamer. I love my t-shirt my wife bought a few years ago. It reads: "Nintendo Rehabilitation Clinic: The first step is admiting you have a problem." The first step to any addiction is to admit to having a problem. If you can put the controller down to spend time with your family. If you can put down the controller to feed your child. If you can put down the controller to change a dirty diaper or pull a loose tooth. If you can put the controller down to cook dinner. If you can put it down to get more than 2 hours of sleep before work. Then I'd say you don't have a problem. But if you can't do these things, then you have a problem. This is where online gaming shines. 'Er okay maybe shines isn't the right word. Online games have the greatest potential for abuse.
 
Some of y'all may be familiar with my rants on gaming addiction. Online games (as with internet period) is filled with anonyminity (sp?) You are faceless unless you choose otherwise. (Just because you claim to be a hot blue eyed blond with giant knockers and have the picts to prove it, doesn't actually mean you're still not lying.) Online no one knows your shame. No one cares if you're 600#, pizza faced, four eyed, deaf, crippled, disabled, hunchbacked, buck toothed, weasel eyed, snot snuffling freak. All they care about is can you do your job? Can you cover yer teammates? Can ye grab that flag? Can you be online for 8 hours helping yer linkmates camp a Huge Notorious Monster for that item they want? Can you tank? Can you nuke? Can you shoot straight? Online you become wanted. That is a powerful feeling for many people. 
 
Offline games can be just as addictive. Like online games, you can easily immerse yourself in a virtual world where you are a God so to speak. You become the hero. Chicks dig you. Guys want to be your followers. Life sucks. We all know this. And like any form of entertainment, it can be addictive. Yet for some reason, gaming addiction is frowned upon even moreso than po rn addiction or t.v. addiction. Again, if you can put it down to be with your family, how is gaming for 4 hours a night before bed any different than watching t.v. for 4 hours before bed?
 
2) If you know someone that you know thats a video game addict (friend, relative, or loved ones), what would you do in this situation? You can try to help them, but you can only lead a horse to water, but you can't make 'im drink. This holds true for gaming addiction. Sometimes you have to Slap! them in face just to get their attention. Sadly I've seen gamers lose their families (i.e. getting slapped in the face) and still not wake up to the problem. 
 
2) After reading this thread, did it changed your perspective of the amount of time you spent on playing video games? Why? Why not?  No. I readily admit, I can easily clock in 8 hours or more a day gaming, via handhelds and home consoles. With my pain levels and medication, this immersion is beneficial. I still take time to cook dinner, spend time off the games with my wife, spend time with my daughter. Half my gaming time usually occurs at work where I'm on light duty due to my work related injury. Yes, it's permenant. My wife also has said that at least she knows where I'm at when I'm playing video games. I've been gaming for nearly 30 years. I'm likely to die with a controller in my hands. But I'm happy. My wife's content. My daughter loves me. Is there anything else more important than having a loving family? No. And I make sure my gaming doesn't interfere with that.
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Re: Video Game Addiction: When does it become a problem?

Nov 28, 2008
it becomes a problem when you dont wanna hang out with your friends just to play games

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