Cyber Addiction: What Is It?

The Problem

The cyber world is producing a whole new category of addicts. These new forms of distraction from reality are removing legions of healthy, young, talented men and women from realizing their potential and enjoying healthy lives in the ‘real world.’ This website is devoted to helping them.

A New World Order

The cyber world is the primary source of entertainment for tens of millions of Americans. Annual U.S. retail sales of video games alone are expected to hit $40 billion in 2010. Younger Americans are more likely to play video games than to participate in organized sports and studies show that the average American child spends 46 hours per week in front of a screen. A staggering 83 percent of American children own a video game console. Once played by young people, these games increasingly appeal to adults, with some studies setting the average age of video gamers at a surprising 33. The world of recreation and entertainment is in the midst of a cultural shift, which purports to offer many advantages, but likewise puts many individuals in peril.

Hidden Danger

Many features of the cyber world tap into the compulsive side of human nature. New technologies have steadily heightened realism and allowed players to feel more a part of the games they play, thereby increasing the potential for addiction. Social networking sites and texting have taken a lot of the work out of social interaction, but also reduced the quality of interaction for many individuals. Excessive cyber use impedes social and academic development. It damages relationships, and in some cases exhibits the hallmarks of addiction. Faced with few options, parents, spouses and friends of cyber addicts are searching for ways to deal with a problem that significantly disrupts their lives. Video Game Addiction programs can help.

See the write-up from the Birmingham Eccentric from May 11, 2008 – Drawn Into Cyberspace