Computer dependency and addiction to computer games
There are a lot of different dependences, beginning from not very serious up to fatal ones. The most dangerous of them are considered drug, alcohol and nicotine addictions, but there are also dependences of another kind, which lead in serious cases to mental disturbance and other fatal consequences. Computer dependency and addiction to computer games belong here. The man, who suffers from this sort of pathological addiction, spends a lot of time at his PC surfing the net or playing computer games. And if the internet dependence is not so dangerous, as it doesnâ€™t estrange the person from real life, the game addiction is considered a true escape from reality, and it is not a harmless condition at all.
Computer dependency has more wide meaning, than game addiction, and it includes addiction to any actions connected with computer, such as updating the programs, downloading pictures, chatting or playing games online. Nowadays the number of people, who suffer from such kind of dependence, grows day by day. The reason of computer dependency can be the following:
- Lack of impressions in real life. The man tries to receive those emotions and feelings, which he misses in daily routine, by entering the world of virtual reality.
- Psychological trauma. Negative experience is suppressed by a special kind of â€śnarcoticâ€ť, helping to get distracted from the existing problems.
- Lack of self-confidence, low self-concept. Computer reality allows to be whoever you like (you create your own image on a forum or some special website, or become a superhero in some computer game), that helps you to assert yourself and to aggrandize in your own conceit.
Pathogenesis of such dependence is different by adults, teenagers and children. The dependence of the last ones progresses much faster. Besides, the children and teenagers are subjected to the influence of their peers, and if the company of kids constantly plays and discusses games, as well as spends hours at social networks, the teenager or the child will adopt this practice. Adults suffer more frequently from computer gambling, which let them feel very strong emotions, connected with endorphin excretion (hormone of happiness) caused by the next victory.
As was mentioned above, addiction to computer games is the most insidious dependence among virtual life propensities. The majority of online and computer game addicts are teenagers and young people, but adults can suffer from such passion as well. It is not so difficult to reveal the game dependency, as it has a lot of typical symptoms:
- Loss of control on time, spent at the computer. The person with computer dependency can hardly realize how much time he wastes for his passion. It often happens, that computer addict spends sleepless nights by playing computer games.
- Missing food intake or eating at the computer.
- Irritability, nervousness. These emotions are especially strong, when somebody doesnâ€™t allow the addict to play games, for example, his relatives make him do home duties instead.
- Loss of interest to work or studies. The circle of interests of a computer gamer is concentrated mostly on favorite games, heroes and super weapons.
- Memory impairment. The person often forgets of given to him assignments, specified dates and so on.
- Constant talking about the favorite theme and impossibility to switch over to other themes of conversation.
- Indifference to interests and problems of other people.
- Less communication with relatives and friends.
- Disregard of own hygiene and care of himself. When game addiction becomes serious, the person doesnâ€™t care of his clothes and appearance. He may wear the same clothes for weeks, doesnâ€™t wash himself and so on.
- By addiction to computer games the child has no progress in studies at school. He suffers from moodswings and reacts inadequately, when someone asks him to stop playing the game. But we should understand the difference between game addiction and computer game entertainment. The last one can be easily controlled, and besides the games the person has many other interests too.
The crucial stage of dependence may be very pernicious. The relations between the addict and his environment get ruined; severe mental disturbance takes place. In especially serious cases the person may fall into a deep depression and even think of a suicide. Besides, long sitting at the monitor is negative for physical health of a human: it causes backaches, pain in hands, shortsightedness and constipations as a result of hypodynamia.
Computer dependency and addiction to computer games were determined officially as dependences not long ago. Game addiction can be diagnosed according to typical clinical manifestations and changes in immune system of a human. Some components of the blood, responsible for receiving positive emotions from usual everyday activity, are decreased by the computer addicts. So the stage of dependence can be diagnosed by examining special blood markers.
The successful treatment for computer dependency is possible only if the patient himself understands his addiction, what is the same by alcoholism and drug dependence. Usual persuasion and frightening wonâ€™t help here. Computer dependence therapy has several stages:
- To create the right motivation. To persuade the patient in treatment, psychologists and psychotherapeutists get the relatives of the patient involved in the process and consult them. Together with the specialist they create the appropriate manner of behavior, which helps the addict to realize his illness.
- To reveal the reasons of forming computer dependence. After that the patient is prescribed psychocorrection, antidepressants and sedatives (if needed).
- Psychological assistance may be individual or in group. Talking to specialists and other addicts is a very important and useful part of the therapy. It is aimed at developing new life priorities and interests, training oneâ€™s will and self-control.
- The success of the treatment depends on creating the right living conditions, where the patient will find a place for many new interesting things and hobbies, which let him remove his computer and games to the end of his list of preferences. This period of time he needs the help of close people badly.