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Anxiety from Video Games

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siamii

Member
Joined
Sep 18, 2010
Messages
11
Hi there,

I have a wierd phobia that is fear of video games. I have tried to talk to a professional, but the wating list is 8 months (!) and I don't have money for private counselling as I am a student. I would greatly appreciate any help on possible treatment from you folks. In return, I also try to help you from my experience because I have done some personal research on effective anxiety / phobia / panic attack treatments.

Symptoms

Whenever I see a screenshot or footage of a video game, I get a panic attack, which means intense anxiety. I know that it is irrational, but I cannot control it. I avoid any kind of video games, even 3d computer graphics. Thus I block images on my laptop, and I do not go out with friends, because a video game machine could be at the club. In addition, I do not watch TV, because of the video game ads. My life is severly restricted.

Background

When I was a kid, I played video games a lot. Then I felt that it started to take over my life and that I became addicted. There was a time when I played 16 hours a day for 4 months non stop. I had no hygine, ate pizza all the time, became extremely overweight, almost dropped out of school, my relationship with my family was ruined, I became totally socially isolated, didn't talk to anyone except in game chat and ventrillo, didn't go out of my room for days. At the same time, I felt I was having the best time of my life, I had this euphoric feeling as if I was constantly high on drugs, even thought it was better than sex. I got this feeling while playing or just watching others play, like replays.

After 3 years of hardcore gaming, I quit cold turkey. My life started to come back and I passed my finals with flying colors. I lost weight and I made some new friends. I came back to real life. But I had intense craving to play again and flashbacks of the games during the day and while asleep. Later, this turned into a fear. My reasoning goes: I cannot control myself when playing games, I get sucked in without even noticing it, games hijack my brain because they give me euphoric immersion, my life will be ruined. Therefore, I must avoid games.

Treatment

I read about Cognitive Behaviour Therapy on the internet. Also, about conditioning, gradual exposure, medication, extinction, etc. I tried to gradually look at games again. I decided to play again, but only for one hour a day. This became a miserable failiure. I ended up binge gaming in no time. This lasted for 1 year, and caused me to drop out of uni this time almost. I quite again, and the cycle repeated. First I had intense cravings with flashbacks for 1 year. Then it turned into a fear. So now I am where I was 5 years ago.

I would greatly appreciate any help or advice on treatment as to how I could not freak out from video games.
 
L

Lil

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 6, 2009
Messages
114
Do you have someone there who can help you moderate your gaming time? I'd also suggest finding something else you really enjoy doing to help encourage you to move from the game onto something else. Gaming addictions are extremely common now from what i can tell. I'm a bit of a WoW addict myself :)
 
Uglulyx

Uglulyx

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 4, 2011
Messages
243
Location
Ontario
I understand what you mean. It's all about finding good things to do other than video games. Also I tend to avoid MMOs now just because I know that I am vulnerable to getting sucked in and binge gaming. Just try to have a clock visible without you having to move from your seat and check it easy so often eventually you'll get used to checking on the time and might be able to handle controlling your own gaming time.

That's what I did but my case certainly wasn't as bad as yours was. Remember though, you don't have to play again either, you just have to be able to tolerate it without anxiety so that you can go out with your friends, watch tv, read magazines etc.

I wish the best of luck to you.
 
S

siamii

Member
Joined
Sep 18, 2010
Messages
11
Thanks for the replies. My main problem now is that I simply have a panic attack when I see a game :O It's like a phobia. How do you cure panic attacks and phobias in this case?
 
R

rifrstsk

New member
Joined
Jan 26, 2011
Messages
1
However, they don't mention that you'll have to continue to pay them for every phone call or each document they do for you. But definitely the need of professional accident lawyers to claim the compensation is indispensable.




nose surgery
 
A

avastavatar

Guest
Some video games particularly those with scary or adult situations and high levels of violence can increase anxiety levels in some chilis works because playing the game releases the same kind of adrenalin response the body enters in a fight or flight situating a fight or flight response your respiratory rate increases, your heart rate increases, your pupils dilate, you may experience tunnel vision and/or hearing loss, and blood is diverted away from nonessential body functions like digestion for a short time to increase blood flow to your muscles making you faster and stronger. During an actual fight or flight situation where you are truly in danger or believe yourself to be energy and adrenaline is expended by either fleeing the situation or staying to fight. In a hypothetical fight or flight situation such as playing video games the energy from these hormones is not expended and remains at high levels in the body which can lead to anxiety issues.
 
G

Ginglymus

New member
Joined
Oct 24, 2017
Messages
1
Siamii did you ever find any resolution or tips for what you are experiencing ? I have experienced something similar for the last few years (although to a lesser extent, and mainly regarding a certain video game)
 
Kerome

Kerome

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 29, 2013
Messages
12,748
Location
Europe
Video games can have some pretty severe effects if you get significantly addicted, that’s for sure. I had an episode of this a long time ago, but not as bad - I was able to quit cold turkey and more or less go back to normal with few side effects.

This is a very old post though. Most of the people in this thread are no longer active on the forums.
 
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