Developing an excessive need to fill the day with video games can have adverse effects on the player and those who are personally involved with the player.
Video game overuse is so rampant in places such as Japan and China that there are rehabilitation centers that have opened to specifically treat video gaming and virtual world role playing addictions.
The American Psychological Association, and American Medical Association want it entered into the DSM due to the rise in cases. The DSM, Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, will not allow video game addiction to be entered as a disease. If recognition were secured, the insurance industry would have to recognize it as a medical problem and pay for it.
Video game overuse is similar to addiction, it is possible that its just a symptom of a bigger problem. Gambling addiction is sometimes a symptom of a larger problem. If a gambler’s real life is not exciting enough, then, gambling maybe used for escaping reality. Whether it be a posh casino or a dive, a gambler can find a place that fits their ideal environment or just find a place that just provides gambling. The same can be said for a video gamer that logs into SecondLife or World of WarCraft. The gamer could easily leave his real world behind, become absorbed in a world that the addict can have a faux omnipotent presence, meet people that fictionalize their personas and be enveloped by fantasy surroundings.
The lures of gambling addiction can lead to loss of control, severe preoccupation, neglect of personal relationships, lying about time spent on activity, and the addict will use family, friends, associate resources as a means to continue gaming.
There are some children and adults that will first pour all of their time into a game. They acquire a game, play it for a season and, then, move on. Their family, friends, and relationships do not suffer. Their personal hygiene stays intact, they have short term goals such as plans to hit the mall with friends, go vegetate at a movie or complete some personal project that needs to be done . They have long term goals, such as; saving up for vacation, planning a family reunion, completing educational courses or fulfilling a set of career goals.
Video gamer users primarily have gaming on the mind and will isolate themselves, dedicate their full resources, time and attention to playing their game uninterrupted.
Video game addicts exhibit the same criteria as a gambling addict. Just as some dog hoarders have multiple disorders, such as; compulsion, delusion and attachment. A dog hoarders’ unrealistic need to collect and, subsequently, neglect animals will continue until the mental issues that cause hoarding are addressed and treated. The same can be said of severe video game overusers. The core problems will continue to present symptoms in the form of game compulsion until the root problem is addressed.