(What The Tech)— I know, you’re probably sick of hearing about Fortnite. Especially if you have a child that likes playing it. Some Fortnite players will be at it for hours at a time. It’s an obsession, and according to some mental health experts, it’s as addicting as cocaine.
“You’re not putting additives in your body, but it’s doing something to the brain,” Licensed Professional Counselor Shervetta Porter said.
Porter said she’s worked with families dealing with video gaming disorder which is now recognized as a disease by the world health organization.
“It’s like any other addiction, the serotonin and dopamine in our brains sends out those rewarding signals in the body that says ‘yes I’m having a good time.,” Porter said.
While some may be able to play games for a while and then go back to real life, some struggle with it. They get angry when they have to stop, they’re moody, withdraw from their friends and it affects school or work.
Porter said if you spot these warning signs, at some point: They may need professional help.
“Most of the time when we’re dealing with these issues in a session, the person usually has some other underlying issues such as anxiety, depression, they may be bullied at school. They may feel like an outcast. The gaming is a fantasy world where they can be any person they want to be.” porter encourages parents who believe fortnite or gaming is causing serious problems with their children, to contact a professional counselor.
Fortnite is a free game but players often spend money on extra features.
It can be played on gaming systems such as the Xbox and PlayStation, on their phones or tablets or on a computer.