Do you require urgent assistance? Call the emergency hotline on 116 117.
If you feel that you are no longer in control of your gaming habit, it is important to get help from a professional. No longer being in control means that your gaming habit has had major negative consequences for you in one or several areas of your life, e.g. your social interactions and network, work, school/university, finances or your mental, emotional or physical health.
The most important thing you can do is talk to somebody. For example, you can use our (i.e. the University Hospital of North Norway) chatroom, where you can chat anonymously with experts about gaming and gaming problems.
There are many places around Norway where you can get effective treatment for gambling problems. Some services require a referral from your general practitioner, NAV (the Norwegian Labour and Welfare Administration) or your local municipal social services. It can be helpful to take our self-assessment test before seeking help, e.g. seeing your general practitioner. We recommend bringing a printout of your results from the self-assessment test.
Not sure who your general practitioner is? You can find out on Helsenorge.no, where you can also switch to a different GP.
On Hjelpelinjen.no, you can find information about various treatment centres around Norway.
What does treatment entail?
Identifying the nature and severity of the addiction
We use a questionnaire as a way to get an understanding of how serious your addiction is. There are different variants of the questionnaire that healthcare professionals may use to identify the degree and nature of a person’s video game addiction. You will also receive treatment for any other mental health issues your GP or therapist identifies.
If you undergo treatment, you decide with your therapist how frequently you will meet. The frequency of your therapy sessions can vary according to your own preferences, your therapist’s assessment, your current life situation, mental health and severity of your gaming addiction. Typically, you meet once a week or every two weeks at the start of the treatment.
The conversation mainly focuses on helping you find out why your gaming has become a problem for you and investigating any thoughts or feelings associated with your gaming habits. Following that, we look into measures you can take to change your behaviour and better control your impulses through practical steps related to gaming.
I want to try to deal with this without professional help. What should I do?
Set up a daily structure that you can stick to. Organise your days so that you have to complete other activities before you can play video games for the limited period of time you have remaining at the end of the day. Make sure to stick to your daily rhythm by waking up and going to bed at the same time every day. Having a regular activity such as a job, studies or some other type of commitment can be very helpful in limiting the time you spend on gaming.
A lot of people find it helpful to have the opportunity to talk to someone going through a similar situation, or someone who has already been through what they are currently going through. Spillavhengighet Norge organises member meetings for video game addicts and their family/partners in most major cities across Norway. You can find a full list of available support groups on spillavhengighet.no.