The current paper completes the study of the major depressive disorder that B.K. (a 20-year-old male) has been suffering from for the last five months. The disease occurred due to the long-lasting addiction to gaming, which has seriously influenced the patient’s mood, his relationships with people, and the overall attitude to life. It is notable that B.K. denies the presence of addiction and does not draw any parallels between gaming and the developed disorder. The decision of patient’s former PMHNP to refer to cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) during the intervention was reasonable and helped B.K. to discover how his behavior affected his health (Corey & Corey, 2013). Nevertheless, the need for further treatment explains the necessity of taking complex approach to the elimination of disturbances, including depression and schizophreniform.
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The Most Accurate List of Diagnoses for the Patient
Provisional diagnosis reporting the development of the major depressive disorder cannot be argued, for the patient admits the presence of insomnia, decreased motivation, poor concentration, and the overall feeling of worthlessness. To add more, he reported regularly reoccurring delusions and auditory hallucinations over the last five months, which brought enough criteria to fit schizophreniform. One, however, cannot neglect the fact that B.K. complains about the increased irritability that is inherent in patients with internet gaming addiction. The PMHNP states that the mentioned diagnosis is not viewed as the primary one due to it being unofficial. Nonetheless, Bishop (2015) views “the concept of addiction as being useful in the context of Internet or gaming behavior” (p. 3). B.K., in fact, has all symptoms characterizing the gaming disorder: the feeling of restlessness, desire to stay online 24/7, and isolation from others. Thus, alongside with the depressive disorder and schizophreniform, the list of diagnoses should be replenished by the gaming addiction disturbance.
The Most Efficient Approach to Decreasing Patient’s Gaming Experience
Because turning off a computer is one of the hardest tasks to complete for B.K., one may conclude that gaming experience seriously contributes to the aggravation of patient’s symptoms. As stated in the study of Internet gaming disorder (IGD) conducted by Zajac, Ginley, Chang and Petry (2017), “past studies have linked IGD to more severe outcomes” (p. 979). The researchers admit that people who play games are exposed to the problem of decreased gray matter in the hippocampus section of the brain, which, in its turn, leads to the occurrence of depression and schizophrenia.
To reduce the patient’s gaming experience, a therapist should successfully implement support-oriented, collaborative, and cognitive constituents of dialectical behavior therapy (DBT). A beneficial side of the approach is tracked by the possibility to identify and alter negative thoughts usually accompanying the state of depression. Practitioners must take measures to assist the client in raising self-awareness of his feelings, attitudes, and values and show him how they all influence the interaction with other individuals (Wheeler, 2013). The focus should be made on discovering the alternative spheres of interest and switching attention towards the latter. Regarding the medication intake, simvastatin can be removed from the prescription list since B.K. does not have severe conditions caused by ischemic heart disease or atherosclerosis.
The previous diagnoses of patient’s conditions were correct, yet, required completion due to the strongly marked internet gaming disorder. The study has proven that the schizophreniform symptoms B.K. currently demonstrates are tightly linked to the extensive gaming experience he has had for the last five months. To reduce the occurrence of the given symptoms, a therapist is expected to conduct a substantial DBT treatment to eliminate the origins of both depression and schizophreniform disorder.
Bishop, J. (Ed.). (2015). Psychological and social implications surrounding internet and gaming addiction. Hershey: PA: IGI Global.
Corey, M. S., & Corey, G. (2013). Groups: Process and practice (9th ed.). Belmont, CA: Cengage Learning.
Wheeler, K. (2013). Psychotherapy for the advanced practice psychiatric nurse (2nd ed.). New York, NY: Springer Publishing Company.
Zajac, K., Ginley, M. K., Chang, R., & Petry, N. M. (2017). Treatments for Internet gaming disorder and Internet addiction: A systematic review. Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, 31(8), 979-994.