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Psychology Behind Video Game Addiction

Autor:   •  June 12, 2014  •  Research Paper  •  1,320 Words (6 Pages)  •  811 Views

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Psychology behind Video Game Addiction

Introduction

Video game addiction is the extreme use of computer games in a way that interferes with the every day living of an individual. Some of the indications of video game addiction include the excessive playing of video games and high willingness to make video games achievements. Playing games on a casual basis has its advantages but if one is gaming for more than 24 hours in a week then he or she is classified as a game addict. According to Doan & Strickland (2012), video gaming addiction causes a number of health problems which include irregular eating behavior, wrist problems and cleanliness problems due to many hours of gaming. Other symptoms include gaming at work, neglect of personal responsibility, stealing money to play games and refusing to pick phone calls due to high concentration on gaming. About 90% of American children play games with about 3 million of them being addicts. However, the number is not limited to children and extends to adolescents and young adults. The easy targets are those with conditions such as attention deficiency disorder and depression together with those with poor interaction skills. Psychologists have over the years argued that gaming addiction does not occur randomly or due to personal interests in gaming. These psychologists present the view that some external and internal factors make a combination that forms a basis under which gaming addiction occurs (Doan & Strickland (2012). Some of the common psychological reasons behind gaming addiction are highlighted below.

The Reward System of Gaming

A reward system is a mechanism that dictates the feelings of our brains when individuals performs an activity that lead to a particular reward sometimes or at all times. When the reward is provided when a particular activity is performed, the human brain builds a relationship between the activity and the reward. What this implies is that, human will take every opportunity available to attain the reward after the performance of a particular activity. The degree of the relationship between an activity and the reward depends on how regularly the reward is offered and the importance of that reward to an individual. A good number of games are designed to exploit this mechanism of the brain and offer some rewards on reaching a certain performance in a game. Some of the rewards in a game include the gathering of points and setting records. For example “Diablo” is a game that provides a chance of reward for every monster that is conquered. Since the reward provided on a random basis with no time patterns, the gamer can’t help but think that the reward is around the corner and this encourages more and more gaming which in turn leads to gaming addiction.

Creation of a Responsibility

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