With the advent of Internet and technology, there has been a tremendous increase in the number of Internet users all around the world. In today’s age of digitization, you can hardly find anyone who doesn’t have the presence in the virtual world. In India around 360 million Internet users can be found who are active on the virtual front. From this you can estimate that around 360 million USD annual revenue is generated from the online gaming and role players. This figure is estimated to rise to about 1 billion USD in the year 2021 and one can appreciate that the growth and boost the gaming market is expected to earn. This also shows the great influence and trend the online gaming is generating in the todays generation.
Gaming addiction is a problem of the 21st century. The gaming addiction is highly contagious that spreads not through the touch but through the need to escape from the real world and live their aspirations and fantasies in the virtual world. Yes indeed as in todays time the routine life of individuals ranges from studies to assignment stresses to household tensions to professional commitments, hardly anyone finds time to achieve what they aspire for. This is where the influence of the gaming world comes in to the picture, relieving them of their stresses away from the burdens of professional assignments to personal fights and make them enter in to a world of escapism where the world will be controlled by the click of a button.
These games work on the phenomena of MMORGs. About 46% of online gamers in the virtual world prefer the format of MMORGs that implies as the Massively multiplayer online role-playing games. In this the player has to commit to about 10-12 hours of their commitment to the online gaming community. Instead of spending that time with their families and near and dear ones they spend it fighting for the lost temple or to find the kidnapped princess killing shooting their way till the end.
Signs and Symptoms of Gaming Addiction:
- The person spends most of his valuable time with the online community.
- The person suffers loss of appetite and changes in sleep cycle, weight loss.
- The person suffers symptoms of irritability due to lack of sleep, difficulty in concentration as majority time is spend playing the game rather than relaxing their eyes and brain.
- Hiding the time spend in the online games with family and friends.
- Living in denial about the addiction and living in an delusional world where everything is alright.
How to help?
- First and foremost it is important to accept that the individual is suffering from an addiction and then only stern actions can be taken to help in overcoming the addiction.
- Talking openly about the pros and cons with the individual is of utmost importance.
- Discuss any issues of concerns in the personal and the professional life.
- Escalate the problem to a professional in case the person is not ready to accept. Seek the help of a psychologist, psychotherapist or a psychiatrist for detailed assessment.
Together we can and together we have to grab the individual from the clutches of the virtual world and bring them back in to the reality!