Game Addiction Is More Real Than You Think
Computers, laptops, tablets, smartphones or other gadgets are present in almost every house these days. Many kids have access to these gadgets since the very young age. And games are usually the first thing they engage with on those gadgets. Addiction to games as well as the general online addiction are the topics that have been discussed a lot for many years, Naturally, parents, teachers and psychologists are all concerned about the possible effect of excessive playing.
Many parents don’t see game addiction as something serious. Of course, it does not have some strong physical consequences as drug or alcohol addiction, but it can lead to some major physiological problems. Here is why game addiction is also very dangerous:
- Your kids may have sleeping problems.
- There can be constant anxiety when not playing a game.
- School problems.
- Sometimes game addiction can lead to ADD or ADHD.
- Bad health and physical state. Kids need to move a lot; it they sit in front of a screen all day long, there can be physical troubles including gaining weight.
Video game addiction signs
Parents may not notice their kids are addicted to games at first. However, there are some common signs that can tell you if there is a problem. Here are some of these signs.
Irritation. As many other addictions, game addiction makes people irritable. If you notice that your kid is more irritable than usual, it can be a sign.
Bad school performance. If kids become addicted to games, they usually lose any interest in school, extracurricular classes or any sport or other hobbies. All their attention goes to games.
Lying. Kids with video game addiction tend to lie about the time they spend playing. If you catch them doing it, it may be a sign.
Sitting at home and not seeing friends. If your kid starts spending much less time outside or hanging out with friends, the reason may be the addiction.
What to do
If you suspect there is a problem, you should act immediately before there are serious consequences. Here is what you can do.
- Ban all the most addictive online games. There are some games worth banning at all. Google them and forbid your kids playing them. Remember that not all of the children’s video games are bad and addictive. Some can be quite useful and educational.
- Limit time of playing games. The perfect option is if you do it when your kids only start playing any video games. It would be harder to do if there is already the addiction. But it can work much better than banning all the games at all.
- Talk to your kid about the problem. You should try and explain what negative effects game addiction can have on your kids’ lives.
- Offer alternatives. Try to think of some fun activities to take your kids’ mind off the games. Go somewhere with them, enroll them to some dancing or sports classes, etc.
- Go to professionals. If nothing seems to work, maybe you should go to a psychiatrist for help. Also, there are many addiction treatment centers that can be very useful.
Computer addiction in children is definitely something to look out for. Pay attention to all the possible signs and try to discuss online addiction with your kids occasionally.