How long does a game addiction last?
Still, generally, boredom, for instance, usually takes about three weeks before you start to experience other activities as being engaging and fulfilling in the same way. Overall, the biggest gains and benefits tend to happen in the first 30 days of not gaming, and then things become just more normalized in your life.
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends no more than two hours per day of screen-based entertainment. Parents should create a “media plan” that dictates what hours a child can enjoy video games without affecting behavior and homework, Radesky says.
Gaming addiction is a compulsive mental health disorder that can cause severe damage to one's life. It's common for a video game addict to spend over 10 hours a day gaming, usually well into the night, and many suffer from sleep deprivation 2.
Preventing a Gaming Problem
Set time limits for play and stick to them. Keep phones and other gadgets out of the bedroom so you won't play into the night. Do other activities every day, including exercise. This will lower the health risks of sitting and playing for long stretches of time.
A study in 2019 published in the National Library of Medicine found that gaming addiction positively correlated with depression, loneliness, and social anxiety especially in the young adult population.
Experts agree that the same treatments used for sufferers of other addictions appear to work for video game addicts. As a result, they generally recommend counseling and psychotherapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, 12-step programs and medication, either individually or in combination with other treatment methods.
It turns out video games aren't a waste of time and just rotting our brains away! In fact, a study from Oxford University has found quite the opposite, and that playing four hours of video games every day is actually good for your mental health!
The topic of video games and sexual health was a deep interest of the researchers, many of whom considered themselves gamers. The researchers found that while gamers and non-gamers showed no difference in erectile and orgasmic function, gamers were less likely to report premature ejaculation than non-gamers.
The largest share of respondents (30%) play 8–12 hours of video games per week. The largest share of Gen X gamers were split evenly between 8–12 hours and 1–3 hours per week (26% each). Boomers most commonly spend just 1–3 hours gaming each week (31%).
A decline in personal hygiene or grooming. Inability to set limits on how much time is spent gaming. Signs of irritability, anxiety, or anger when forced to stop gaming, even for brief periods of time. The need to spend more time playing games or to play more intensely in order to get the same level of enjoyment.
Is gaming addiction a mental disorder?
You hear it over and over again. If it seems your child's love of video games has taken over their life and you're genuinely worried about his/her well-being, it could be headed towards what the World Health Organization (WHO) has officially classified as a mental health disorder: gaming disorder.
The reward center in the brain releases dopamine in response to a pleasurable experience or hyperarousal. If a person experiences hyperarousal while playing video games, the brain associates the activity with dopamine. The person develops a strong drive to seek out that same pleasure again and again.
Further research shows that gaming disorders can also be linked with anxiety, depression, obesity, sleeping disorders, and stress. People who remain physically inactive for long periods because of gaming may also be at higher risk of obesity, sleep disorders, and other health-related issues, according to WHO .