Gaming Addiction: Does Treatment Work?

From online communities to boot camps, people are seeking help for problem gaming — but what do we know about the best way to treat it?

Whether or not gaming addiction is a diagnosable mental illness is still a hot topic of debate — some experts argue, for example, problem gaming is merely a symptom of other conditions.

In June, the World Health Organisation (WHO) included gaming addiction on a list of diagnosable conditions.

But still — the controversy persists. Gaming Addiction: Does Treatment Work? - gaming console

No matter the debate, the WHO decision appears to have led to a rise in people seeking help and in new treatment programs.

So what do we know about how to treat problem gaming?

Last week we heard about a new residential “detox” program in Thailand designed to help young adult male gaming addicts.

It’s promoted by Canadian “reformed game addict” turned entrepreneur Cam Adair, whose organisation Game Quitters is “dedicated to helping game addicts the world over” and purportedly has over 50,000 members.

Child and adolescent psychiatrist Huu Kim Le, who helps advise Game Quitters, sees patients for gaming disorder at a public hospital in Adelaide.

He’s seen an increase in visits from parents concerned about their child’s gaming behaviour since the WHO decision.

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