Help and Resources For Computer Gaming Addiction In New Zealand
According to a 2012 report, most New Zealanders play video games in moderation, but 6-8% of us may have problems with the way we spend our time gaming or using the internet, whether it's playing action games on a console, Massively Multiplayer Online (MMO) games on the PC, or social games through a phone or tablet.
This website aims to provide information to people interested in understanding problematic use of gaming and gaming addictions in New Zealand. It aims to provide a critical look at how we as a people are using the internet and gaming, and provide resources for those looking to change the way they or their family are doing things, by drawing on the available local and international research.
Using The Site
There's a lot of material on the site, and so if you've come here for the first time I recommend taking your time to go through the material slowly. You may find it helpful to read one page at a time, or even part of a page and then stop to think about how it relates to you or someone in your life. I've tried to give a mix of theory around what addiction is and why games become addictive, and practical ideas for how to overcome gaming addiction or help someone else who might be addicted to games - but this means there's a lot to read as well! Below are my suggestions about where you might like to start.
If you're a gamer and are feeling like your gaming might be a problem, I'd suggest starting by reading about Assessing if Your Gaming is a Problem and How to Change Your Gaming. If you'd like to know more about the process of addiction and how it happens, or why games can be so compelling as to become addictive (though if you're a gamer you probably already know!) then you might also find the articles on What Is Addiction? and Why Do People Get Addicted to Games? worth a read as well.
If you've come here because you're concerned about a family member or friend and want to understand whether someone in your life might be addicted, and how addictions work then I'd suggest starting by reading the articles on What Is Addiction? and Why Do People Get Addicted to Games?. If you are at the point where you are struggling to cope because of an addicted person in your life, then I would suggest reading Their Problem or Yours first for some tips on how to support yourself and manage living with an addicted person. If you're wanting to know how you can help out an addicted person in your life, then head over to the article on How You Can Help.
If you're a clinician who is interested in learning more about gaming addiction and how to work with it, then definitely start by reading Why Do People Get Addicted to Games? to get a bit of an understanding about why games have such a strong psychological draw for a lot of people. You might then like to read What You Need To Know About Gaming Addiction which is aimed at clinicians, and the follow-up article on Implications For Treatment. If you'd like to learn more about working with people with gaming addictions, then I also provide training on the subject based on my years both as an addicted gamer and as a registered psychotherapist working with this client population.