Many people make online gaming a hobby to fill their spare time. If it is still done within reasonable limits and does not interfere with activities or health conditions, this habit is not problematic. But if playing online games has led to addiction, this is what you need to be aware of.
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Online gaming addiction is a mental disorder characterized by the urge to play games for hours on end, even to the point of forgetting or not caring about other activities, such as work or schoolwork. This type of addiction can even lead to other psychological problems, such as anxiety disorders and depression. Online gaming addiction can happen to anyone, from children, teenagers, to adults. Well, here we will share signs of online game addiction and how to overcome it.
Signs of Online Game Addiction
Apparently, there are some signs or symptoms of online game addiction. We can say someone experiences online game addiction if she/he has experienced some of the below signs.
- Has the desire to play games all the time.
- Feels moody, stressed, or angry when unable to play games.
- Needs more time to play to feel better.
- Spends most of her/his time playing games without engaging in other activities such as eating, bathing, studying, or working.
- Experiences problems at home, school or work related to gaming habits.
- Has a habit of lying to others because of the urge to game all the time playing games
- Spends money on purchasing games.
Also, people who are addicted to online gaming may experience physical symptoms such as fatigue, headaches or migraines, back pain, and eye strain. Some online game addicts do not feel troubled by their behavioral disorders. However, in severe cases, online game addicts may even experience nerve damage to their hands due to prolonged gaming. Therefore, a psychiatric examination from a psychologist or psychiatrist is needed to confirm whether or not a person is indeed experiencing online gaming addiction.
How to Overcome Online Gaming Addiction?
If you experience online gaming addiction, below are some tips to overcome it.
1. Limit Playing Time
Limit playing time is one great way to prevent and overcome online gaming addiction. If you often spend too much time playing games, then you can try to make a gaming schedule and set a time limit, such as only one hour per day. Having a regular schedule will be able to help you divide your time between playing games and completing other obligations. If necessary, you are also able to make a reminder note or alarm on your phone to prevent you from playing games for too long.
2. Find a new hobby
The next tip to overcome online gaming addiction is to find a new hobby. Now, you can try some new hobbies other than playing games, such as painting, exercising, playing musical instruments, or reading books. Based on the research, these activities can be used to distract you from your phone or computer screen. Also, regular physical activity can keep your body healthy and fit, as well as prevent and alleviate the health problems due to excessive gaming, such as back pain.
3. Put the gaming device outside the bedroom
Usually, the bedroom is a convenient place to play online games. If you are addicted, you might find yourself spending hours late into the night playing games in your bedroom. Of course, this can disrupt your sleep and eventually affect your health. To overcome online gaming addiction, it is a good idea to put down the gaming devices such as cell phones, computers, or game consoles, outside the bedroom. This way, you will be able to reduce your playing time because there are no devices nearby.
4. Undergoing psychotherapy
You need to consult a psychologist or psychiatrist if the above tips are not successful in overcoming the problem of online game addiction. To overcome the problem, usually the doctor or psychologist may provide psychotherapy. For your information, one of the techniques that can be used to treat online gaming addiction is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT).
Need to note that online gaming addiction is one of the most common mental health problems. If you experience online gaming addiction to the extent that it interferes with your rest, school, or daily work, you must consult a psychologist or psychiatrist immediately.