Video games can be a healthy way to distract you from alcohol and drugs. One thing you can do to help you recover and stay sober is to engage in hobbies that you enjoy doing and keep you occupied.

Distraction can be a useful tactic to deal with addiction and other conditions that affect the mind. Have you ever thought about keeping yourself occupied with video games?

There are thousands of video games that can keep you busy and distract you from substance abuse.

Of course, some people say that video games are more mixed blessings. As much as video games can keep you distracted from using drugs or associating with people who use drugs, some people say that playing too much can lead to a video game-playing addiction. In this view, people might trade one addiction for another.

For people prone to addictive tendencies, playing video games could become too enticing and become an obsession. The time you spend playing video games might cause concern.

Some people worry that video games and virtual reality environments can trigger addictions, since some are full of drug or alcohol references.

Furthermore, when you are playing online, you could be competing with other players who might be cruel to you. They might say or do something nasty that could make you crave drugs and alcohol even before you heal completely.

If you want successful results while using video games as a distraction, try to limit your playing time. If you’re worried about losing your sobriety and relapsing, you can with a therapist or sobriety group for advice.

Veterans healing from substance abuse have found refuge in video games. In fact, an increasing number of 90 day rehabilitation programs are recognizing that video games can be an obsession for some and a healing tool for others.

Playing video games helps you practice mindfulness, which helps you psychologically. Completing challenges and winning games also boosts your confidence, provides social connection when you’re interacting with your online teammates and opponents, and can ultimately help you heal from drugs and alcohol addiction.

Different Video Game Experiences

There are several video game genres that you can play in the comfort of your home. They include games that relate to

  • Sports
  • Puzzles
  • Role-playing action
  • Board games
  • Adventure and fantasy
  • History
  • Gambling

While different genres of games can help you recover, it’s important to proceed with caution. People who have had problems with gambling, for example, may do better if they avoid video games that feature gambling elements.

But moderate game playing can help you interact positively with others. This can help you forget about bad influences and your past problems with substance abuse.

Try different video games for different experiences. If you’re playing a sports game, try playing it with team members. Allow yourself to experience the pleasure of playing with others to achieve a fun new experience that could expand your world.


Advantages of Video Games When Recovering from Drug Addiction and Alcohol

Using video games can address drug and alcohol addiction by:

Using Adaptive Coping Strategies

Adaptive coping is acknowledging your problems directly and not hiding from them. You can consciously choose to play video games for a few hours when you start craving a substance, for example.

Your chosen activity can distract you. You’ll be thinking about how you are going to win in your game, not about the substances you’re craving and your addiction.

Relieving Stress and Managing Your Moods

Overwhelming stress levels can lead to drug and alcohol addiction. You might think that the substances can ease your anxiety, but if you use them every time you become anxious, you could become dependent on or addicted to them.

On the other hand, video games can help you boost your mood. Once you get into the action of playing a game with exciting music and engaging characters, your mood brightens, and your stress and cravings can vanish.

Enhancing Your Social Life

A lonely life can lead to addiction. People who are lonely and depressed might turn to alcohol and drugs to cope. But playing video games with others gives you the opportunity to interact.

Playing video games with your family could help you maintain a strong relationship (or rebuilt) with them. Your time together might help you feel a sense of belonging that keeps you away from alcohol and drugs.

Improving Your Psychological Well-Being

Participating in first-person shooting games could allow you to draw your strength from the game strategy and settings. This strength could help you face trauma and pain, such as drug and alcohol addiction.


Virtual Reality Video Games

Virtual reality (VR) video games could be used to assess and treat addiction. VR games immerse you in computer-generated virtual surroundings, either in a room or on a head-mounted display device. The VR images can help distract your mind away from cravings and help you recover.

Drugs and alcohol abuse can lead to health problems, loneliness, lost relationships with friends and family members and even lost lives. However, you can keep yourself occupied with your favorite video games that can distract you from substance abuse.


Author Bio: Patrick Bailey is a professional writer mainly in the fields of mental health, addiction, and living in recovery. He attempts to stay on top of the latest news in the addiction and the mental health world and enjoy writing about these topics to break the stigma associated with them.


Sources – The Use of Virtual Reality in Craving Assessment and Cue-Exposure Therapy in Substance-Use Disorders – How Video Games Are Saving Those Who Served – Virtual Reality (VR) in Assessment and Treatment of Addictive Disorders: Systematic Review


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