9 October 2017
The definition of computer or video game addiction is “excessive or compulsive use of computer and video games that interferes with daily life.”(Aviv) people that suffer from this often isolate themselves from social contact and the play games uncontrollably. They also start to focus on game achievements rather than real life goals and events. There was an extreme case in South Korea of parents letting their baby starve while they played a popular MMO or massively multi-player online game called World of Warcraft. Another definition is “Griffiths (1) has operationally defined addictive behavior as any behavior that features what he believes are the six core components of addiction (i.e., salience, mood modification, tolerance, withdrawal symptoms, conflict, and relapse)” this means to fit this description of an addict you’d have to care more about computer games than your own life, feel a modified mood (i.e. a high or buzz), gain a tolerance where you need to play more of the games to get the same mood effect a before, have withdrawal when you stop gaming, also you must have conflict between the addict and those around them, and finally relapse which means to fall back into old video gaming habits.
There are multiple heath problems with extensive computer usage that have been showing us scene the 1980’s. patients have reported skin, joint, and muscle problems from constant button hitting a study showed that two thirds of arcade game players had “blisters, calluses, sore tendons, and numbness of fingers, hands, and elbows directly as a result of their playing.”( Aviv) they also report neck pain, hallucinations ,and strain injuries.
The cause of computer addiction is not completely clear but there is a connection between childhood trauma and developing any addiction including computer addiction. “It is not uncommon to find social problems in modern families, but in the most extreme cases, failures of socialization within the family can lead to early drug use and crime by young people.”( Fariza). M.S. Ivanov says there is a formation of two mechanism involved with game addiction witch are that it creates a sense of wanting to escape reality and taking the role of the other witch means that you can easily put yourself into another person’s perspective in order to reflect on yourself. Personality traits that seem to be at a higher risk of developing computer addiction are tendency to seek new experiences, aggression, and anxiety.
“During the game, their mood is significantly improved, and observations show that in the process of playing a person expresses positive emotions.” (Fariza) this is a very drug like response that video game addicts have when they play games. This positive mood increase the addictiveness of the games and It makes a feeling of anticipation around computers and gaming. After logging off the game the addicts’ mood starts to decrease quickly going back to its normal state. They can start to feel depressed afterwards that is the need for more gaming. Addicts feel the real world is dangerous and boring this often makes them anti-social and they have a hard time adapting to society. When they face society it can lower tier heath and it decrees their mood this can cause a never ending loop of video game addiction.
Some think of their own game addiction as a good thing such as john a young computer game addict who proudly admits to being a gamer and to being addicted to it. He says the computer is crying out to him and that it is so much fun to play. For most of these kids they are constantly made fun of and bullied by their peers, it makes them dislike school and in extreme cases they will quit school altogether. Some of these kids that are very much addicted don’t actually play computers for that long each day (3-4hrs). of these house most are spent playing First person shooters and Role playing games. Some of these kids don’t even know they have an addiction. In an interview one kid said” Interviewer: So you were addicted to computer games without knowing you had a problem? Simon: ‘‘Yes, I didn’t know it was an addiction. As far as that goes, I thought addiction had something to do with drugs or alcohol.”(Brus) some of these kids have nowhere else to turn to as they are just bullied at school and so the computer is their only social haven. this is sometimes a reason regular computer use can become addictive use due to the actions of others around you.
Some suggest that video game addiction causes aggression but in a study that had a study sample of about 7000 gamers mainly male this study showed that out of the gamers only 12 percent of the gamers fit three or more of the criteria for addiction the number was surprisingly low for the fact that the study sample was gamers. The study did not end up proving a significant link between computer addiction and increased aggression.
There are a few ways to treat video game addiction. There is evidence that abstinence in 12-15 year olds is successful. The United States, Canada, and some other countries have set up treatment centers for video game addiction. Physiology and pharmacology and yielded no results in helping cure video game addiction. There is very few clinical trials that deal with curing video game addiction. there still is many unknowns due to the lack of knowledge.
In conclusion computer use is a obsessive use of computers that negatively effects daily life and you must fit the criteria of salience, mood modification, tolerance, withdrawal symptoms, conflict, and relapse. Gaming for too long can cause sores and carpal tunnel. Gaming effects your mood and makes you happy, but when you get off it drops the happy feeling this gets even worse when you get addicted and can cause a cycle of addiction. Kids have a variety of ways of looking at computer addiction such as it is a good thing that helps them to it needs to be stopped because it is a problem in their social lives. Finally there is no easy way to treat video game addiction but abstinence seems to work and some countries are setting up treatment centers for video game addiction.
Brus, Anne. “A Young People’s Perspective on Computer Game Addiction.” Addiction Research & Theory, vol. 21, no. 5, Oct. 2013, pp. 365-375. EBSCOhost, doi:10.3109/16066359.2012.733466.
Grüsser, S.M., et al. “Excessive Computer Game Playing: Evidence for Addiction and Aggression?.” Cyberpsychology & Behavior, vol. 10, no. 2, Apr. 2007, pp. 290-292. EBSCOhost, doi:10.1089/cpb.2006.9956.
Oskenbay, Fariza, et al. “Psychological Trauma as a Reason for Computer Game Addiction among Adolescents.” International Journal of Environmental and Science Education, vol. 11, no. 9, 01 Jan. 2016, pp. 2343-2353. EBSCOhost, search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=eric&AN=EJ1114586&site=ehost-live
Tsai, Chin-Chung and Sunny S. J. Lin. “Analysis of Attitudes toward Computer Networks and Internet Addiction of Taiwanese Adolescents.” Cyberpsychology & Behavior, vol. 4, no. 3, June 2001, pp. 373-376. EBSCOhost, doi:10.1089/109493101300210277.
Weinstein, Aviv Malkiel. “Computer and Video Game Addiction—A Comparison between Game Users and Non-Game Users.” American Journal of Drug & Alcohol Abuse, vol. 36, no. 5, Aug. 2010, pp. 268-276. EBSCOhost, doi:10.3109/00952990.2010.491879.
Zamani, Eshrat, et al. “Comparing the Social Skills of Students Addicted to Computer Games with Normal Students.” Addiction & Health, vol. 2, no. 3-4, June 2010, pp. 59-65. EBSCOhost, search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=aph&AN=65790605&site=ehost-live.