Anyone who has experienced it knows all too well – video game addiction is real. Although gaming addiction is not yet officially recognized as a diagnosable disorder by the American Medical Association, there is increasing evidence that people of all ages, especially teens and pre-teens, are facing very real, sometimes severe consequences associated with compulsive use of video and computer games.
Video games are becoming increasingly complex, detailed, and compelling to a growing international audience of players. With better graphics, more realistic characters, and greater strategic challenges, it’s not surprising that some teens would rather play the latest video game than hang out with friends, play sports, or even watch television.
Of course, all gamers are not addicts – many teens can play video games a few hours a week, successfully balancing school activities, grades, friends, and family obligations. But for some, gaming has become an uncontrollable compulsion. Studies estimate that 10 percent to 15 percent of gamers exhibit signs that meet the World Health Organization’s criteria for addiction. Just like gambling and other compulsive behaviors, teens can become so enthralled in the fantasy world of gaming that they neglect their family, friends, work, and school.
If you or a loved one shows signs of computer or video game addiction, this website is for you. Here, you will find up-to-date information and resources that will help you assess whether gaming has gone from an entertaining pastime to a full-blown obsession. From signs and symptoms to advice for parents and treatment options, this site offers advice and solutions to help bring compulsive gamers back to real life.