Video and computer games, like many entertaining and addicting kid activities, are looked down upon by many parents as time-wasters, and worse, parents think that these games rot the brain. Also, the media and some experts readily blame violent video games as the reason why some youth become violent or commit extreme anti-social behavior. But many scientists and psychologists find that video games actually have many benefits. Video games may actually teach kids high-level thinking skill that they will need in the future.

Video games give your child’s brain real workout. In many video games, the skills required to win involve abstract and high-level thinking. These skills are not even taught at the school.

Simulation, real world skills. The most well-known simulations are flight simulators, which attempt to mimic the reality of flying a plane. All the controls, including airspeed, wing angles, altimeter, and so on, are displayed for the player, as well as a visual representation of the world, and are updated in real time.

Video games introduce your kid to computer technology and the online world. You should recognize that we are now living in a high-tech, sophisticated world. Video games make your kid adapt and are comfortable with the concepts of computing. This is particularly important for girls who typically are not interested in high technology as much as boys.

Video games also can teach important skills or address serious issues, Organizations such as Games for Change promote the use of games for education and social action, and often involve kids in the creation of games they can use to express themselves on important issues and current events.

Recent studies have shown that video games can have a positive or negative effect on how players behave. Depending on the content. Pro social games can increase empathy, co-operation, helping and emotional awareness, while violent games can diminish these traits.

These effects seem to be stronger in young people who already tend to be aggressive. It has been argued that more hostile or aggressive young people will be attracted to violent games and that it is not the games causing the problem. However, even taking into account the person’s hostility, it is clear that exposure to violent games causes increased aggressive behavior (as indicated by things like the degree to which they get into physical fights or argue with teachers).

For most teens, playing video games is just another recreational activity they enjoy with friends. The concern is when video game playing becomes an addictive or isolating activity.

Children who are heavy users of video games may also be getting less exercise and develop poor eating habits. Make sure that your teen is getting outside and not snacking too much on unhealthy foods while gaming.

If you are concerned about the amount of your time your teen is spending on video games, keep in mind that it is normal for young people to throw themselves enthusiastically into hobbies. Consider the effect your teen’s gaming is having on his or her life.

Gamers also report that they play games to escape things like family or personal problems. In a similar way to people who use drugs or alcohol to escape their problems.

Computer game addiction generally refers to an excessive, unhealthy amount of playing computer games. Rather than engaging in the real world, an addicted user devotes the majority of his or her time to gaming. The addicted gamer often isolates him/herself from others, ignores more important responsibilities, and is often obsessed with obtaining higher status/rankings/achievements in his/her favorite computer game.

Because there is no official diagnosis of computer game addiction, there is obviously no universally agreed upon list of symptoms. Psychologists and other mental health professionals initially adapted the diagnostic criteria for gambling addiction and used this as a rough assessment tool for computer game addiction. This classification approach is rarely used today and for better or for worse, it is essentially up to the individual researcher or clinician to define the symptoms of computer addiction.

Although somewhat similar to the symptoms of computer game addiction, the negative consequences of excessive gaming are often divided into five main categories:

Social Consequences

As a computer game addict spends more time gaming, he/she tends to spend less time interacting with others in person. As such, he/she may lack face-to-face human contact, experience isolation and loneliness, and the loss of friends or relationships.

Academic/Career Consequences

Children and teens that are addicted to computer games very often experience falling grades and decreased academic performance and dedication. Completing homework, studying for tests, and efforts during school become very low priorities. Adults who are addicted to computer games may experience a similar deterioration in work performance, job dedication, and career aspirations.

Financial Consequences

Adults and teens may spend large amounts of money on new games, expansion pack, micro-transaction, service fees, and computer upgrades. In extreme cases, jobs may be lost due to poor work performance, playing while at work, and frequent absences.

Family Consequences

Computer game addiction often leads to deterioration in family relationships. Tension and conflict between family members escalate as requests to cut back or stop are ignored. The addicted player may initially deny that a problem exists, try to hide how much he/she plays, and accuse the other of trying to “control” his/her life. Parents of addicted children may disagree on how to address the problem. Which may lead to frequent arguments and conflicts.

Health Consequences

Computer game addicts may neglect personal hygiene, have poor sleep habits, give up healthy physical activities, and may make meal decisions based on quick and easy preparation so that gaming is not interrupted rather than dietary needs.

Emotional/Psychological Consequences

Those addicted to computer games may experience depressed mood, low self-esteem, social anxiety, low frustration tolerance, anger, and feelings of guilt and shame for not being able to control their gaming habits. Of note, it seems likely that difficulties in other areas can cause and be caused by computer game addiction.

The terms Internet addiction and online addiction are occasionally used to describe computer game addiction, but more appropriately describe excessive web surfing, email checking, instant messaging, Facebook use, or downloading movies, images, or music

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