Concerned family and friends worldwide should become familiar with the signs of video game addiction before it is too late. As with any other addiction, video game addiction should be taken seriously, and will only become more and more of a widespread issue as the popularity of electronic gaming continues to rise. With advancements in technology and gaming development, it stands to reason that the games themselves will increase in quality, which will only make the possibility of addiction more likely.
As with other addictive behaviors, though, video game addiction is not necessarily a tragic case without hope. Addicted victims may simply need a little help toward achieving a healthier lifestyle, and knowing the signs of video game addiction can be an integral piece of assistance in the uphill battle of recovery.
When a hardcore gamer spends hours upon hours every day in front of a screen playing video games, often in his parents’ basement or in the dank dungeon of his bedroom, he will tend to develop an aversion to sunlight. Not exiting his above will cause an unfamiliarity with natural sunlight, and as his body adapts to receiving less sleep and other video game-related environment stresses, this will include the inability to properly function outdoors in sunlight.
Just as a crack addict must resort to any means necessary in order to constantly feed his or her need for the next fix, so too must a video game addict potentially utilize unsavory measures in order to satiate his habit. Ultimately, though, as the basic level this simply means that to buy the next game in a series, or purchase the latest home console, or get the next killer-app accessory, will often require most (if not all) of a gamer’s available funds. Addicts may seek part-time jobs just to fund their gaming, or have to hound family and friends for money; but no matter what measures they employ, once addiction has set in, monetary consequences soon follow.
Gamers have one of the worst social reputations in existence, but the stigma behind the stereotype turns out to have a grain of truth behind it: One of the signs of video game addiction is a decrease in social stature with such symptoms as alienation from former friends, the behavior of seeking virtual or fictional companionship over actual human interaction, and the placing of video games at a higher priority than family functions and hang-out sessions with buddies. Once a player puts games at the highest place of value in his or her life, all other elements must pay the price.
It may be cliche to say that knowledge is half the battle, but it is certainly true in the case of addictions, and knowing the signs of video game addiction is no exception. Knowing these tell-tale signals means knowing what to aim prevention toward, and thus possibly turn the tables against the onset of video game addiction and save a life.