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Online gaming addiction Counselling

Online gaming addictions present themselves as an unhealthy relationship with internet based gaming. Technology addictions manifest with an obsessive need for the individual to interact with technology (e.g. smart phones or video games) and is seen most often as an obsession with interactive online games.

Sufferers of an online gaming addiction come to associate games with intense pleasure and often use them as a means of escaping difficult or undesirable life situations. With the help of a counsellor sufferers can begin to identify triggers, thoughts, feeling, and habits that influence this behaviour and learn coping strategies that will help them lead healthier and happier lives.

Online Gaming Addiction Characteristics

Due to the nature of society in developed countries it can be difficult to recognise an online gaming addiction. It is the norm for people to spend a lot of time on the computer, and many individuals require technology to remain in contact with others in their jobs. With that in mind, gaming addicts typically manifest with compulsive behaviours, which make an addiction more evident.

The help of an objective and supportive counsellor / psychotherapist may make a great difference in a sufferer’s ability to take back control of their lives. The first step is identifying the problem.

Online Gaming Addicts:

  • Are interested only in online gaming
  • Cannot leave a game to complete daily activities
  • Communicate more with and have new friendships with other gamers
  • In order to avoid interruptions, they might wear adult nappies while gaming
  • Feel compelled to have access to technology at all times
  • Will spend hours in front of a computer without breaks for anything, even food
  • Decreased performance at work and/or school because of gaming
  • May be depressed, tired, or irritably when not gaming

Treatment Options for Online Gaming Addictions

While not recognised as a diagnosable condition, online gaming addictions can have serious consequences.  They can impact the individual’s families, health, or livelihood if left untreated.  Like other addictions, online gaming addictions have many options for treatment.

Some gaming addicts will find one-on-one counselling beneficial.  For some sufferers treatment may need to start at an inpatient addiction rehabilitation treatment programme.  Either a one-on-one counselor or a counselor at the treatment programme would be able to conduct a mental health evaluation to determine if any coexisting conditions exist.  Knowing this will help to appropriately treat the sufferer.

Sufferers will benefit from a supportive environment which can come from many places.  Support can be gleaned from family, friends, church, or a 12-step programme such as Online Gamers Anonymous.

How can Online Gaming Addiction Counselling or Psychotherapy Help?

A counsellor / psychotherapist will provide sufferers with a safe confidential environment where they can explore the thoughts, feelings, habits, and triggers surrounding their addiction.

An online gaming addiction counsellor will help you to:

  • Learn new coping strategies to deal with stressful events, thoughts and feelings
  • Identify the roots of your struggle
  • Look honestly at your out of control gaming
  • Help you to identify other activities that you enjoy to incorporate into your day
  • Help you to live a healthier and happier life
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