Internet & Gaming Addictions

Internet addiction disorder

The fastest-growing addiction worldwide

A very recent trend  “Internet addiction disorder”(IAD) is characterised by the obsessive and disproportionate use of the internet. Other existing mental health issues can be linked with Internet and Gaming like addiction,  depression and other related disorders.
It is of crucial importance to consult a mental health professional in cases of IAD. A professional therapist is required to identify the root problem and suggest strategies and techniques that will further the addict’s recovery process.


Gaming Addiction on Computers

Internet & Gaming Addictions, Internet & Gaming Addictions, Best Addiction Rehabilitation  in South Africa, Best Addiction Rehabilitation  in South AfricaComputer Gaming Addiction has only become an issue and a recognised problem in the last decade. Computers are a “recent” phenomena, therefore a very current addition to the list of actions and substances that cause addiction and abuse.  Most healthcare professionals recognise the potential for computer game addiction as the process affect the same brain area that heroin and cocaine stimulate.

Research by mental health professionals worldwide and caregivers recognise computer game addiction as a genuine addition and a mental health disorder. In some circles, however, it has not yet been granted official diagnostic status, even though the destructive effects and health issues caused by an addict spending extreme amounts of time playing computer games believed to cause mental and physical damage and had lead to death in some extreme cases.


Houghton Rouse Rehab has experienced a huge surge in concerned people looking for advice and answers on Internet Abuse and Gaming Addiction.

Concerns include:

  • Selfishness with an absence of awareness in what’s going on around the person.
  • Extreme lengths of online time on the internet
  • A lack of self-care not washing or eating much
  • Anti-social behaviours
  • Blaming of others for their anti-social behaviour
  • Poor communication skills, defensiveness and excuses for poor behaviour.
  • Preoccupation with getting onto the internet
  • Difficulties in socialising in company
  • No interest in how their behaviour is affecting other family members

Internet Computer Game addiction

Now classified as a compulsive destructive behaviour similar to Sex and Gambling Addictions. Computer game addiction is recorded as an impulse control disorder, as substance abuse is not the issue but the addiction or compulsion is driven by the same desires as those felt by the compulsive sex or gambling addict.

It has been noted as the characters in video games are more realistic and relatable and technology evolves, games and characters become increasingly multifaceted and complete. Characters become more true to life and become more bonded with the player in some circumstances becoming more real than life and part of their psyche. Latest advances in the field have created visual content and specialised and highly advanced graphics, often seen as more controllable and preferable to the real world as encounters within the game are more challenging and are more strategic than ever before.

Gaming companies business model is to  design the games to be as addictive and compelling as possible  to sell games, addons, lives and other apparatus to the game community. Much research and testing is done to make games as addictive as any drug


Addiction and Obsession in Computer Gaming

Addicted users spend less time involved with the real world and more time fixating over obtaining higher rankings, status or achievements, will isolate themselves within their computer game of choice. Addicted and obsessed users often ignore important responsibilities and are obsessed to achieve these goals and proses within the game. This is especially concerning with children of school-going age who are easily swayed and influenced and who’s attention is captured and preoccupied with the excitement of gaming.

The online and cyber world attracts and makes addicts of both teens and adults of both genders who immerse themselves in a made-up virtual reality world in a closed environment. This is not seen as a healthy lifestyle or way of socialising and people should balance this with interacting with groups, friends and family, and involvement in outdoor goings-on. As indication is that people of all ages and genders are being drawn into the cyber world of gaming, which crosses into virtual gambling and virtual sex and the often-severe consequences – physical and mental linked with the compulsive use of video and computer games.


Gaming Addiction on Mobile phones

Internet & Gaming Addictions, Internet & Gaming Addictions, Best Addiction Rehabilitation  in South Africa, Best Addiction Rehabilitation  in South AfricaThe arrival of the smartphone and other mobile devices like the tablet has not helped the situation. Gaming is no longer confined to a large expensive gaming desktop computer at home. Sophisticated mobile devices are now powerful enough to allow the user access to the many games and virtual reality sites out there from any location. Many gaming apps can be downloaded free, or come pre-installed with many devices.

Mobile devices have opened up an entirely new world for gamers, gamblers and sex addicts. With the leap of technology in mobile devices, gaming manufacturers rapidly made uses of the addictive ability drawing more and more people into the cyber digital Internet & Gaming Addictions world. With mobile phone games becoming increasingly sophisticated, advantage has been taken of the exponential improvements in visual reality display, processing, storage, interfaces, network bandwidth and operating system functionality.


Internet & Gaming Addictions Downside and Outcomes

Houghton House believes that it is not a personal failing – not all people that play video games and play online become are addicts. Many people can play games at the same time as fruitfully balancing life outside of their gaming or virtual reality. Unfortunately for some, the compulsion to escape into the virtual fantasy world of gaming is uncontrollable. Inattention and disregard begin to be prevalent in areas of day to day life. and can override responsibilities, obligations and the rituals of daily life, personal hygiene eating decent meals, even going to the bathroom when required.

Houghton House considers these Internet & Gaming Addictions a manifestation of an addictive type personality, one addiction may be replaced by other, unfortunately generally a more physically and socially damaging form of addiction. If you or one of your loved ones is spending excessive periods of time gaming or on the internet for non-work related purposes, and this may be having a negative impact on their lives.

We see that the process and negative outcomes of gaming addiction are no different or extreme than that of a substance abuse addict.

Gaming addiction becomes a way of life.


For more information on how to help internet or gaming addiction or any substance abuse and getting yourself help to start a new life, call Houghton House now:

office hours:  011 787 9142

24/7 emergency help line: 079 770 7532

Click on the green envelope below and fill in our contact form, and one of our professional staff members will get back to you via email or phone, respecting your anonymity at all times.Internet & Gaming Addictions, Internet & Gaming Addictions, Best Addiction Rehabilitation  in South Africa, Best Addiction Rehabilitation  in South Africa