Game addiction clinic opens in Amsterdam

By Justin Mann on July 19, 2006, 10:50 AM
Just how bad can game addiction be? If you're one of the many, like me, who have bought a game on pre-order and then stayed up for 3 days straight after it arrived to blaze through it, you know how addicting a captivating game can be. The greater immersion that video games offer over movies or other types of digital entertainment make them easy to get into – and get lost inside of. For most, that's ok and we can handle it. For others, they are not so lucky, and for many it has become so bad that a game rehab clinic has been opened in Amsterdam. Other countries around the world are also beginning to see game addiction as an addiction like any other and have begun treating it as well. For some, it can be serious:

Hyke van der Heijden, a 28-year-old Dutchman, said his gaming problem got so bad that he flunked out of college. He said pot smoking and gaming kept him emotionally sedated for years. "The games, that was my comfort zone. That was the only reality I could manage."
While I don't agree with some in saying that video game designers are responsible for addictions, it is easy to see how someone could toss their life away to play more. The original article also goes into the general nature of the Internet and things like MySpace. An interesting read, and a topic that is likely to stir up controversy.

User Comments: 5

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Phantasm66 said:
I used to be addicted to games. After coming home from work, I could not relax without playing something like Q3 or Unreal Tournament for about 1 hour. I've now stopped playing games altogether. I don't feel like I am missing anything in my life.
slake said:
OMG - that is lame. How about turning the computer off and going outside?
zephead said:
ahh, games can never be addictive on a chemical level. it's simply a matter of poor self control.
eko said:
Yes they can :DI remember playing C&C Tiberium Dawn like a madman back when I was in high school.And it was FUN, too !
zephead said:
i can understand playing a game a lot because you enjoy it - i used to play far cry for at least 4 hours every day of the week. but to say that computer games can produce a chemical dependency resulting in addiction is pushing it. if that were true, then you'd go thru withdrawal (vomiting, sickness, that kind of stuff) once you stopped playing games.if anything, there is a mental addiction happening here. and let's face it - it's not that hard to overcome.
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