Children and computer games: how to recognize and fight off addiction


Children and computer games: how to recognize and fight off addiction

Virtual reality came to stay in our daily life. We spend more and more time at computer, and less and less time is spent on communication with friends and walking outdoors. Many people believe that spending time on playing computer games gives proper rest. Children are especially prone to it. Parents get disappointed, worry about their children, forbid them to play and lecture them. Yet, it all shows no desired result. The result is short-term if any. So, when should parents let their children up, and when this is the case of addiction?

Computer games: good or ill

It is difficult to give a definite answer to this extremely urgent question. On the one hand, games are a huge time sink. They replace for a child the healthy communication, which cannot fail to affect the child’s development. It grows not very talkative, its interests range narrows.

On the other hand, scientists claim that there are many games that benefit the development of attention, logic, creativity, teach children to orient themselves, find a way out of difficult situations. It appears that it all depends on a specific game story, and the time devoted to deeds in virtual reality.

Game addiction signs

You do not need to worry as your child spends some leisure time on games. As long as completion of missions and levels is only one of the pastime activities, along with walking with friends, reading books and attending workshops, clubs, there is no reason to worry. But when virtual reality becomes the main and the only leisure pursuit, when you have to tear your child away from a computer, then we can define it as an addiction.

What causes game addiction

By being absorbed in the game world, one «escapes» from the reality. If a person is not satisfied with the reality, he tends to spend more and more time in the gamer space, where he is successful, where he fights, wins, achieves and gains. This delusive success in some way makes it up for the absence of the real achievements and positive emotions, bright feelings.

Another important thing is that in the virtual world a moment passes from the action and the results, while in the real world one has to wait for hours, days, and sometimes years. In order to become a master of sports or win in a school competition, one needs to train and learn for a long time. At the same time, when playing games, one becomes a champion and a winner at once. Such an opportunity to quickly control the reality forms the addiction.

How to overcome addiction

The first and the key rule is: do not yell at your child or forbid to play categorically. You should realize that any addiction grows in an attempt to compensate for something missing in the real life. This is the key to a successful fight against it.

First, analyze what games your child prefers. If these stand for fighting ones, then the child will be able to feel the thrill and the combat taste in the real life when attending a fight club. Once you understand the point of the game, you will be able to offer an alternative activity that provides for similar emotions. It will help your child move away from the virtual world and get back to the happy life.

In fact, these recommendations do not refer to children game addiction alone. It may as well be useful for grown-ups.

Author Marina Mostovaya

Translator Nataly Bondarenko

Original text Ребенок и компьютерные игры: как распознать и побороть зависимость

 

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