Your loved one may have a problem with internet or video game addiction if their lives are negatively impacted by excessive video game or internet use. Some behaviors you might see in your loved one include:
- Changes in mood or behavior, such as irritability, frustration or depression
- Withdrawing from activities that once used to interest them in order to spend time playing video games
- Financial problems as a result of their gaming and internet use
- Gaming and the internet are used to relieve feelings of stress and boredom.
Internet / Video Game Addiction Questionnaire
The below questionnaire can help you or your loved one determine if their gaming or internet usage is problematic. While it is not an exhaustive list and your loved one might not exhibit all of the behaviors listed in the questionnaire, exhibiting even a few can be the first signs of a problem and that it is time to get them some help.
Answer the following questions with a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answer.
- How much time do you spend thinking about playing video games, learning how to play video games or planning the next opportunity to play video games?
- Have you ever missed school, work or important life events in order to play video games or be on the internet?
- As the time you spend playing video games or being on the internet increased over the last year?
- Has anyone ever criticized or expressed concern over how much time you spend playing video games or on the internet?
- Have you ever tried to cut back on how often (or how long) you play video games or how much time you spend on the internet but were unsuccessful?
- When trying to stop or play less, do you feel restless, have mood changes or become irritable?
- Do you play, or have you played video games or used the internet to avoid dealing with stress, problems or feelings?
- Do you lie about the amount of time you spend playing video games?
- Have you ever stolen video games or money to buy video games?
- Do you avoid responsibilities at home such as chores or homework in order to play video games?
- Have your school grades or performance ever been affected because you were playing video games too much?
- Have you ever needed to borrow money from friends or family in order to play video games or use the internet?
If you answered ‘Yes’ to 1 or more of the above questions you may be experiencing a problem with internet or video game addiction.