What Should Parents Do if Kids Are Addicted to Video Games
Child Addicted to Video Games
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Can you guess which is the best entertainment or the fun game that is best-to-go this pandemic? Video game addiction and online apps are the best time-pass with no doubt that the elderly are into as well. With animated graphics, lovely background, heroic cartoon characters, video games are unbeatable ones that can make a dull evening a party one along with some juice and snackers. Doesn’t it sound fun? That is how every teen or kid who plays the video game feels like they are on the spot when the console is in their hand.
It isn’t the fault by their side as they have no other option while staying at home when no one is around them to accompany or play with them. Hence the reason why kids get addicted to video games. But what can a parent like you can do to get the child addicted to video games out of it? Scroll to find the solution.
Part 1: Popular beliefs about video games
While there are various myths and actual truths regarding video games and their effects, a vast gap exists between our perception and the research. To clarify, we have picked the top three myths about video games and facts to prove that that belief is wrong.
Belief 1: Video games aren't of meaningful forms
The most popular myth that everyone believes is that Video games don’t come under the meaningful form of expression, which is entirely mistaken. As per researches, teens at the age of 18 encourage their values and examine them when exposed to virtual space.
Belief 2: Girls play no video games
This belief took place in historical days that don’t exist now as the percentage of women playing video games increased day by day.
Belief 3: Video games isolate socially
Most video games have the only option to play in teams with their friends and siblings, enhancing cooperation and understanding. Parents are part of it as well.
Part 2: How to tell if a child addicted to video games
So, how can I know that my child is addicted to video games? There are certain signs or symptoms with which one can make sure that your kid is getting windup into the video game world's web! Get to know one-by-one from the list.
- Kids keep on thinking and talking about the game instantly with parents and friends as well. Once they complete the most stringent level, they rejoice, happily expressing their addiction.
- Keep them engaged for hours until a level is complete (A kid continuously played for 14 hours).
- Kids get defensive and enraged in anger when you warn them to stop this gaming habit, or if the gadgets are taken from them forcefully.
- To spend more time in video games, they sacrifice their basic needs like sleep, break time, and even study time.
- Kids hide themselves or downplay in gaming. They show the signs of being preoccupied, anxious, irritating, losing their control, and lonely.
- Kids addicted to video games tend to isolate themselves socially, with changes in their behavior and mood.
- Your child ignores the activities or games that they loved previously. They show no concentration towards school activities and lessons.
Part 3: Harmful effects of video game addiction
Have you observed some unusual signs in your kid’s behavior and are worried about the next? Witness some of the harmful effects that your kids can face due to this video game addiction.
- First of all, coming to the short-term effects, kids skip their food and sleep, giving rise to diet and health-related issues. They miss spending time with friends and going out with family. It would help if you gave importance to these effects or can lead to the long-term effects that can become critical.
- Although playing video games at the beginning seems to be relaxing, significant effects clamp on the kid’s behavior. They tend to behave violently, leading to some physiological problems.
- Too much addiction to video games can pave the way for over release of dopamine from the brain. For learning and concentration, the dopamine chemical is too important. That is also the chemical that gets released when one intakes cocaine drugs. It develops gaming disorder.
- Another study states that excessive video games affect the central lobe of the brain responsible for decision-making. The cognitive function gets affected or deactivated as well by this addiction related to increased aggression state.
- Physical effects include fatigue, eye strain, migraine headache because of over-concentration, deprived personal hygiene, and carpal tunnel syndrome by overuse of the mouse device.
- Such gaming disorder links to other issues like depression, anxiety, loneliness, insomnia, and social problems. If you encounter such effects, then there are high chances for the condition to go worse.
- Overexposure to violent content in video games invokes kids' desensitization towards acts of violence, fear, and worst nightmares, leading to sleeplessness.
Part 4: What should parents do if a child gets addicted to video games
Never want your kids to get into such harmful effects due to video game addiction? Take out a little time to know what you can do from your side when you get these alarming and warning signs.
The first and foremost suggestion is to take some time to talk with your kids regarding this gaming disorder. Never scold or punish them regarding this habit. Instead, have a friendly conversation, and you can try playing the video game along with your child. As a companion, get a console and make yourself a part in it so that you can examine what is causing your kid to immerse in it.
Second, you can opt for certain medications to get rid of such addiction. It is a 12-step program therapy that can be adapted based on your kid’s psychiatrist's advice.
Stopping the use of video games abruptly can cause aggression. Hence allocate a specific time limit for a day or the week and keeps a track on it. It will reduce their hunger for video games where you can introduce other fun activities like indoor and outdoor play to keep them engaged, leaving no space for them to think about it.
Finally, change the environment around your kid. Take them to a picnic, else to the place where they can get interacted with society. Maybe being with friends and making party time with closed ones can distract them from entering the videogame world again.
Part 5: Use a parental control app for help
Now there is one more way to break your kid’s video game addiction. We haven't discussed this solution in the previous section. Want to know what is it? It is the use of a parental control tool to monitor your kid’s digital activities and keep them safe.
- Web Filter & SafeSearch
- Screen Time Limit & Schedule
- Location Tracking & Driving Report
- App Blocker & App Activity Tracker
- YouTube History Monitor & Video Blocker
- Social Media Texts & Porn Images Alerts
- *Works on Mac, Windows, Android, iOS, Kindle Fire
While it is hard to find the best one from the pile of monitoring apps, we have picked the best, Famisafe from Wondershare, for you that comes up with a beautiful feature set. As per the needs of a parent, Famisafe's primary purpose is to track the kid’s phone activities starting from contacts, browsing history, real-time location, installed applications, websites, and geo-fences, suspicious text, and media files. When it comes to video game addiction, two distinct features stand on the mainstream explained in detail.
a. Screen time feature to limit the time
Set the reasonable time limit on which your kid needs to access the phone and when not to. One can do it by setting the Screen-Time schedule with Famisafe to lead to less distraction and increased productivity. It allows you to monitor screen time, preset screen time, and block devices once the time goes out. For sure, your kids can now complete the assignments on time!
b. App blocker feature to block the game
What if your kid tries to spend more time on game apps or attempts to install another video game of mature content? Famisafe has a solution for that too, with the App blocker feature that blocks the apps containing unhealthy info. You can get to know what time was the app opened and used, lock the apps based on rating, and get warned instantly if any of the blocked apps open.
Part 6: Conclusion
“For the past six years, I was under video game addiction due to which I missed the joy of the outer world, including a healthy relationship with my family and friends. I feel sorry now for myself but cannot change the past”. - If you are anxious that your kid will have a story like this, it isn’t too late to get a hold of him/her. With the tips and ways suggested in today’s article, put a full stop to your child’s video game addiction, and don’t forget to give Famisafe a hand to help you out in making a healthy and safe family!