Do you have a teen who spends long hours in front of a computer screen? They could be a video game addict.
Maybe he has become irritable; isolating himself for prolonged periods of time with a compulsive need to play games on one or more of his media devices. If so, your child may be suffering from video game addiction.
According to the National Library of Medicine, “Addiction manifests clinically as compulsive substance seeking, use, and cravings that can persist and recur even after extended periods of abstinence.” In our modern society, there is easy access to video games and online social interaction that can seem like it brings everyone together; however, when this casual social pastime turns into a full blown addiction, it’s time for help.
Here at Pacific Quest, we understand it’s not easy to address and help your child through this video game addict phase which is why we offer a chance to help break this addiction, create balance, and establish a greater sense of self-purpose within your child’s life!
Looking for Happiness in the Wrong Places: The Video Game Addict
Video game addiction is a unique struggle in an adolescent’s life. It starts as a desire to connect and feel part of a community, then, if unaddressed, can become self-destructive. In an interesting article from CNN, the author references a study by Douglas Gentile, a psychologist at Iowa State University. The research showed that video game addiction satisfied the “ABC” of human needs:
- Autonomy- feeling like we are in control
- Belonging- feeling connected to other people
- Competence- feeling that we are good at what we do
As you can see, video games can bring immediate pleasures that trigger a “high” in your child’s life. Most children can easily play a few hours each week without experiencing obsessive behavior; however; it’s important to notice if there are changes in your child’s personality.
Warning Signs of a Video Game Addict:
- Taking more risks in games leads to real life risk-taking
- Substance abuse
- Violant tendencies
- Increased sexual behavior
- Self-destructive behavior
You can read more about on CNN health about video game addiction to smart phones, tablets, laptops, video games and more.
A Video Game Addict and Into The Wild
Now that you have targeted the problem, it’s important to remember you are not alone. The best way to help your child fight a media addiction is with it’s opposite: nature. Wilderness therapy approaches addiction with compassion instead of punishment or humiliation. It’s important to address these issues at a young age in order to help steer your child in a healthy direction.
In an article from the New York Times, a previous addict discusses how addiction “resides in the parts of the brain involved in love” which means that “recovery is more like getting over a breakup than it is facing a lifelong illness.” The best way to heal a broken heart is with time, and finding love of life.
Addicts Reconnect with Nature
Here at Pacific Quest, we practice the belief of “Aloha Aina,” or “love of the land.” Our students at our program learn through love of the land to love themselves and learn to strengthen their sense of community. Our practice is different than most programs that require arduous climbs or harsh punishment.
Instead, we combine horticultural therapy, sustainable practices, and compassion to create specific plans to target your child’s addiction. Your child will learn how to take care of the rural community , and, in turn, learn self-care with the help of our medical and wellness professionals. They will learn new habits that satisfy the “ABC’s” that video games once did.
Skills Video Game Addicts Learn at Pacific Quest
- Sustainable practices
- Healthy living habits
- Planting, preparing, and cooking meals
- Interpersonal skills and sense of community
The biggest thing that your child will gain through their time at Pacific Quest is a greater sense of purpose in this world instead of looking for it in their media device.
Call Us Today
To learn more about how wilderness therapy can help your family…help is closer than you think!