If you think that your child spends too much time playing computer games, then they might possibly have what's called a "gaming addiction."
Nowadays, video games are a daily part of any kid’s life. From playing games on their phone, on a game console, or on their laptop, video games are everywhere. But did you know that it can also cause your child to have what’s called a gaming addiction?
What exactly is a gaming addiction?
The World Health Organization (WHO) has recently classified having a gaming addiction as a mental health condition.
In the 11th International Classification of Diseases (ICD), the WHO will be including the condition “gaming disorder.”
The symptoms of a gaming disorder include the following behaviors:
- A lack of control over gaming (frequency, intensity, and duration)
- Prioritizing gaming over other activities
- Continuing with the behavior despite negative consequences
If these types of behavior are observed over a period of at least 12 months, then it might potentially be a sign of a gaming addiction.
Dr. Richard Graham, the lead technology addiction specialist at the Nightingale Hospital in London shares his thoughts:
“It is significant because it creates the opportunity for more specialised services. It puts it on the map as something to take seriously.”
However, he emphasizes that “It could lead to confused parents whose children are just enthusiastic gamers.” And that why it’s important for parents to keep themselves aware of how much video games their children actually play.
Video game addiction is starting to become a problem
With the prevalence of smartphones and computers these days, more and more kids are getting addicted to video games.
Even TV host and athlete Eric “Eruption” Tai shared that he was once addicted to gaming. It even reached a point wherein his girlfriend threatened to leave him as he was too addicted to games.
There was also a report of a woman who stabbed her own husband because he was so addicted to the online game DOTA. He played the game so much that he was neglecting his responsibilities at home.
That’s why it’s very important for moms and dads to take some steps to make sure that their children don’t get too addicted to video games.
Here are some useful tips to keep in mind:
- Make sure your kids only play their games once they’re done with their chores and schoolwork.
- Kids need to earn the right to play computer games.
- Always be aware of how much time your child spends playing video games.
- Place all game consoles and computers in the living room.
- Encourage your child to read books, or to engage in physical activity instead of playing video games.
Photos from: wikimedia commons