Gaming Addiction

Lots of people like to play video or online games and can spend many hours gaming.  For lots of people this is ok, and they are able to have other hobbies and interests, see friends, and still get on with their everyday lives.  For others, this love of gaming can tip into being unhelpful, and impact on their life in a damaging way.  It is possible to be at risk of, or develop, an addiction to gaming in a similar way to those who are at risk of, or addicted, to substances (such as drugs or alcohol).

What it might look like, or feel like, if someone is struggling with problematic gaming:

Not everyone who has a gaming addiction will experience all these signs and symptoms. Also, if a young person is experiencing some of these signs and symptoms this does not necessarily mean that they have a gaming addition, but it may be important to get further help and advice.

Things that might help someone who experiences problematic gaming:

There is more information and advice on the Big Deal Website (Gaming information, advice and support for young people).

There is more information on the Ask about Games Website.

If a young person is in crisis, they can call 116123 or text YM to 85258 (free to call or text 24hrs a day, 7 days a week)

Use coping techniques.  Here are some strategies to try:

An A-Z of coping strategies:  A-Z of Coping Strategies

How and when to use a coping box: Coping Box

Activity Scheduling: Activity Scheduling

Progressive Muscle Relaxation: Progressive Muscle Relaxation

Breathing Techniques: Breathing Techniques

Share concerns with your child’s school/college, and identify whether additional pastoral support is available.

Help and support may be available from your child’s school nursing team.  Information about how to contact your school nurse is available at:

Seek advice, guidance and support from Young Minds Parent Helpline: 08088025544


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