Technology connects us, allows us to get more done quicker, and gives us information at a much quicker
rate than ever before in history. Like all things, the use of technology can help or hinder our lives.
Anything a person does can create a dopamine hit or give a numbing effect. We know that similar to sex,
food, gambling, alcohol, and drugs, video games and phone use can become addictive.
Playing an hour or so of a video game can relieve stress and be entertaining. However, those that play
excessively can become emerged in the virtual fantasy and let go of interests and other responsibilities.
Here are a few red flags that may point to a bigger problem:
Lying about how much time you spend playing computer or video games.
Playing computer or video games results in intense feelings of pleasure or guilt that seem uncontrollable.
Spending more and more time playing video or computer games to get the same enjoyment.
Withdrawing from friends, family, or your spouse to the point of disrupting family, social, or work life.
Experiencing feelings of anger, depression, moodiness, anxiety, or restlessness when you’re not gaming.
Thinking obsessively about being on the computer or playing video games even when doing other things.
Social Media, YouTube, and other Apps
It is acknowledged that receiving comments and ‘likes’ create serotonin and dopamine, that feel good.
There is nothing inherently wrong with using these applications. A problem often occurs when these become
a way to numb and avoid other responsibilities and relationships. We are trained in helping create a
recovery plan for a healthy use of these applications, as well as ways to heal and tolerate other
discomfort that may be experienced so that the phone does not become the source of escape and numbing.