The arrow keys, also called the Control-pad or D-pad, on a Sony PlayStation Portable can often become stuck with repeated use. Luckily, cleaning the contacts underneath the button fixes almost all of the common malfunctions, and you can open your PSP to do this with very little effort. While series problems, such as damage to the actual electronic hardware, will require you to send your PSP to Sony for repairs, such issues are very rare.
Remove the Memory Stick and battery from your PSP. Make sure that the charging unit is unplugged and that it is not connected to a computer.
Unscrew the six screws that hold the black plastic faceplate on your PSP. Four of these will be found in the battery casing, one on the back, and a final one on the bottom edge. Make sure to keep these small screws in a safe place as they are easy to lose and difficult to replace. Remove the faceplate.
Lift the D-pad button, which should simply come off once the faceplate is removed.
Clean the exposed contacts under each arrow of the D-pad with a small piece of cloth. Rub them thoroughly (they are not fragile) and remove any particles or residue.
Return the D-pad, the faceplate, screws, battery, and Memory Stick. Turn on your PSP and test the buttons. If you still have problems, the problem is electrical and will require you to send your PSP to Sony for repairs.
The arrow buttons rarely get stuck on a PSP, but when they do, it is because part of the button's plastic is getting caught on the faceplate. You can gently file down the plastic on the outside edge of the button that gets stuck when you have removed the faceplate. This will prevent the button from sticking.
Although you can use an alcohol swab or put a small drop of alcohol on a cloth, be very careful not to get any liquid on the LCD screen. Even a small amount of liquid on the screen can damage it.