World of Warcraft Addiction

Marcelina Hardy, MSEd, BCC
Are you chained to your computer because of your WoW addiction?

World of Warcraft addiction is real. Just like being addicted to drugs, alcohol, or gambling, you can suffer detrimental effects from being addicted to a computer game such as World of Warcraft (WoW). Keep reading to find out the path you may be headed down if you don't get your addictive playing under control.

The Personality of a World of Warcraft Addict

Many people innocently start playing WoW because it's a fun, interactive game. It gives people a chance to release tension from the day, gives them a hobby they can succeed in by completing different levels, and provides social interaction with other players online. The game itself is not what causes some people to become addicted; it's the addictive personality of the people playing it. Many experts believe that people possess a gene that makes them more susceptible to having an addiction to something. Only if the person is presented with the addictive stimulus will the person develop the addiction.

Physical versus Psychological Dependency

You may be asking yourself, "Why do people become addicted to games; they are not drugs that have a physical dependency associated with them." The reason is the same as it is for gambling addiction - it's the emotional or the psychological dependence that makes it addictive. The thought that you need to play WoW and you can't live your life happily without the game is what makes it addictive.

People usually play these role playing games because it gives them a chance to escape from reality. Just like drugs and alcohol, when life becomes uncontrollable and unbearable, the addict will turn to WoW so he or she does not have to deal with the turmoil in his or her life. A problem occurs when the person's life is neglected so much that it's worse than it was before the he or she started playing.

World of Warcraft Addiction: Do You Have a Problem?

One of the best ways to know if you have a WoW addiction is assessing whether the game has a negative impact on your life in some way. If the game interferes with the relationships you have with family and friends or with work, you may have World of Warcraft addiction.

The Risks of WoW Addiction

The following are some of the consequences of someone who plays WoW and becomes addicted:

  • Social isolation

The WoW addict will stop or decrease the amount of time he or she spends with friends outside of the game. When the person steps away from the game, he or she finds there is no one around for support or socialization.

  • Neglect of important life matters

The person may be late to work because he or she was up all night playing or call in sick so he or she can play during the day. After some time, this person can lose his or her job, creating many financial issues in the household.

  • Risking health

Individuals addicted to the game may stop eating as much, as healthy, or eat while playing, which results in overeating. This could lead to many health problems such as high cholesterol and high blood pressure.

  • Loss of sleep

WoW addicts may play late at night taking away from the time they should be sleeping. Lack of sleep can cause someone to have impaired judgment, become volatile and experience decreased motor skills putting him or her at risk for other health and occupational risks.

  • Breakup of family

Addicted WoW individuals will quickly see the game as priority placing everything else on the sidelines such as their spouse, children and other family. This can lead to divorce and the breakup of the family.

Helping Your Wow Addiction

It is possible to break your World of Warcraft addiction by following a few simple suggestions:

  • Limit your time

Cut down on the time you spend playing the game; starting small will help you succeed at breaking your addiction. If you normally play for six hours, try playing five hours a couple of days, and then try limiting yourself to four hours.

  • Put a lock on it

Have someone put a parental control on it so you can't have access to it. You may be upset over it for a few days but if you get through a few days without playing, it will get easier to see your life without WoW.

  • Sell everything and delete characters

End the game by selling everything you have and delete your characters. If you can't bring yourself to do it, have someone else do it for you. You may need to back this up with one of the other suggestions such as putting a lock on it, or you will be tempted to resume playing just to build everything up again.

  • Find another hobby

Find something else you enjoy doing to release tension. You don't want to substitute one addiction for another, but you do want to open up your possibilities so you can see that there is more to life than WoW.

  • Seek counseling

If you can't bear to go through the withdrawal phase of not playing World of Warcraft, seek counseling. A counselor will explore your reasons for your addiction to WoW and work with you to resolve issues that have made you become addicted.

Conclusion

Don't wait to end your addiction to WoW; your life isn't going to get any better until you are able to break free from this game. Take things slow, and soon you will be able to repair the damage your life has incurred because of your addictive playing.

World of Warcraft Addiction