Researchers have found that playing video games can be an extremely addictive activity, and some now believe that these same video games could act as a gateway into gambling addiction. But how can this be? How do you even get addicted to gambling? The following article explores how playing video games has the potential to lead to gambling addiction which then leads to gaming rehab.
Games and addiction
A gaming addiction is not a commonly diagnosed mental health disorder. Instead, it’s viewed as an intense commitment to gaming that negatively impacts someone’s life and well-being. Because gaming has become such an important part of our lives, many people use video games as part of their social interaction. What we don’t realise is how much time we spend doing so—and eventually, we lose track of other aspects of our lives that become unimportant in light of our overwhelming obsession with video games.
Games and Brain Changes
Studies have shown that intense gaming can actually change your brain, triggering dopamine bursts and pleasure centres. Much like gambling, when you win something it feels great, but when you lose, it makes you want to try again in order to get your money back. This can be problematic for many reasons—it takes time away from real relationships and lives; it robs people of their money; and addiction puts individuals at risk for other issues.
How Gaming Leads to Gambling
It’s long been suggested that young adults who are exposed to one form of addictive behaviour—gambling, for example—are at an increased risk of becoming addicted to other kinds of addictive behaviours. This is because many types of addictions share similar traits and dynamics, including impaired decision-making and altered reward response in parts of the brain. So as it turns out, gaming can act as a gateway into gambling addiction.
Tips for Parents of Gamers
Parents are well aware of how addicting video games can be for their children. But now, some experts are suggesting that game addiction could lead to real-world issues, including gambling addiction. Video games are built on chance and rewards, which is what makes them so addictive. Kids may not realise this at first and start spending money in the hope of getting rewards as they would in the game. Experts at luxury rehabs say parents should know what their kids are playing and talk with them about finances early on so they know the dangers associated with excessive gaming.
Things We Learned From Playing Video Games
If you’re not careful, video games can start to consume your life. If gaming begins to interfere with your daily responsibilities, take note. If it affects your relationships and/or gets in between you and others in an uncomfortable way, consider taking a break or cutting back. This is particularly important if any of these factors ring true.