Not long ago, the World Health Organization, during the 72nd World Health Assembly, recognized the disease’s addiction to play. This decision resulted in its inclusion in the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems (ICD-11). But, to everyone’s surprise, the benefits of video game addiction have recently been unexpectedly established.
Scientists from Norway conducted a survey of 50,000 gamers around the world, in which they spoke about their lives and preferences. As it turned out, the vast majority of gamers surveyed were not affected by alcohol. The scientists also found that the brighter a person expressed gambling, the less likely it is that the gamer is using any alcohol.
Most respondents attributed this surprising fact to the fact that they prefer to spend all their free time in the virtual world, rather than drinking hard drinks in the company of friends or casual people. Well, those players who engage in eSports professionally and train for at least six hours a day simply do not have time for bad habits.
Computer games posted on the Web will receive age markers
Thus, the Norwegians have come to the conclusion that a strong passion for computer games actually neutralizes alcohol addiction. At the same time, scientists have reminded that it is dangerous to overdo it with games. Despite the fact that today’s tournaments play a very decent amount of prize money, excessive gaming activity quickly becomes addicted, which has a negative impact on human social life. According to preliminary results, it was concluded that people are very addicted to network games, especially to MMORPG and MOBA genres.
Alcoholism and gambling addiction
The link between alcoholism and gambling addiction has long been highlighted by Western researchers. It is well known that among players alcoholics are more common than in the general population, and vice versa, among those suffering from alcoholism the prevalence of gambling addiction is higher than average. It has been suggested that both diseases, in addition to general symptoms such as loss of control, absorption by the object of addiction, suicidal tendencies, etc., have similar brain disorders, similar mechanisms of chemical addiction. When intoxicated, players tend to take more risks in the game and play longer. Individuals at the winning stage are more prone to drinking alcohol. There are not isolated cases when quit drinking, after some time became pathological players.
Most people who have tried to play, treat it as an entertainment and initially ready to lose some small amount for themselves and not a penny more. Possible winnings also leaves them quiet and not willing to play yet. Players, and they make up about 2-3% of all players, like alcoholics, have no “brakes” when they start playing, they can not stop and lose until they are completely impoverished.
The main symptoms of gaming addiction are:
- Absorption of thoughts about the game (memories of the past game, planning tactics for a new game, thinking about how to get the money to play);
- The need to increase rates to achieve the necessary state of inner excitement;
- Failure of repeated attempts to stop playing;
- The state of anxiety and irritation when trying to play less;
- An obsessive desire to win back;
- The desire to hide the true scale of involvement in the game from relatives and close people through lies;
- Wrongdoing such as deception, fraud, forgery, theft, and embezzlement in order to obtain the means to play the game;
- The threat of losing or losing family, job, study, career development due to playing;
Stages of gambling addiction:
- Stage of winning.
The player excites the prospect of such an easy way to acquire money. There is an illusion that he will continue to be accompanied by luck.
- The stage of losing.
At this stage, the player takes possession of a manic desire to return the lost, return a successful game. Other options to correct the situation with finances are not considered.
- The stage of despair.
Players get into such debts that it seems natural for such a situation to fall into despair. Many (up to 25% of all players) feel hopeless and commit suicide attempts. Drinking players try to kill themselves even more often.
The National Play Dependency Committee of the United States suggests answering 10 questions:
- Do you often play longer than planned?
- Do you ever get insomnia when you think about playing a game?
- How often do you play to the last coin?
- Do you spend money on the game, leaving unpaid bills?
- Have you had unsuccessful repeated attempts to quit the game?
- Have you broken the law or thought about it to get money for the game?
- Are you borrowing money to play the game?
- Are you depressed or suicidal because you lose?
- Do you have any remorse after the game?
- Do you play in order to solve financial problems?
If the answer to any of these questions is yes, American doctors recommend seeing specialists for help.
As with any addiction, players do not want to admit the problem and do not want to see a doctor. And the problem is more than serious, patients with gambling addiction need active psychotherapeutic and medical treatment and long-term rehabilitation. As at treatment of alcoholism, the principle “all or nothing” operates, that is the basic condition of the cure should be a complete ban on visiting any gambling establishments and voluntary refusal from any variants of gambling. The cure is impossible if the player does not stop all attempts to get back. Drinking players, of course, must give up alcohol. By the way, the simultaneous withdrawal from alcohol and gambling is not only possible, but also a real step towards saving lives. People who stopped drinking and previously did not play, should not try and play, too high risk of getting into a terrible addiction in terms of consequences.
The diseases that enslave the psyche also apply:
- Kleptomania is an unconscious craving for petty theft. It is included in the international classification of diseases.
- Sexogolism – an irresistible propensity for intimate relationships. Female sexogolism is called nymphomania. A sex addict is obsessed with intimacy and can’t think of anything else. If he doesn’t get a lot of relief, he gets depressed, desperate.
- Bulimia is a mental disorder associated with excessive eating, with guilt for eating.
- Anorexia is another form of eating disorder. It’s characterized by refusal to eat. Patients are known to bring themselves to complete physical exhaustion, incompatible with life.