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By Hal Marcovitz

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Ruya assumed the identity of a bluehaired elf. “The elf was everything I wasn’t, everything I wanted to be,” Ruya says. ”42 At first Ruya played occasionally, but she eventually found herself playing as much as 20 hours a week, immersed in the world of Azeroth. Soon World of Warcraft turned into Ruya’s whole world—she dropped out of school, stopped seeing friends and family members, gained weight, and even stopped bathing. 43 “When I wasn’t playing World of Warcraft, I would get fidgety,” she says.

At first she developed bad college or high headaches. ” when her mother intervened. With the help of her parents, Ruya sought professional counseling and was able to beat — Psychotherapist Hilarie Cash. her addiction to World of Warcraft. “At least I am a person now, not an elf,” she says. ”44 Video Games Can Be Socially Isolating Mental health experts have started looking into cases like Ruya’s with an eye toward seeing the type of long-term and short-term effects that might be prompted by addiction to video games.

Ers and drug users are often happy, giddy, or euphoric. If the user continues abusing drugs or alcohol, he or she could develop a physical craving—the body demands the substances that stimulate the brain’s pleasure center. That person is now addicted to drugs or alcohol. Although not regarded as drug abusers, cigarette smokers may also find themselves with chemical-based addictions because the chemicals in tobacco could also prompt physical cravings in the body. There are other forms of addictions.

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