A lot has said about video games and more especially on the negative effects, they have on children. Video games, just like any technological development have been a pain and a cause of worry among many parents. The thought of their children being addicted to playing video games cause chills among parent who move from one psychiatrist clinic to the other with the hope of finding a solution for the same. However, many more parents encourage and even get video games for their children. Video games have been considered a better alternative for children instead of indulging in other irresponsible behaviours or watching television too much. Video game is an indoor activity that is sure to keep a child busy, and hence giving their parents ample time to engage in other activities. In this paper, we shall look at the implications of video games and what can be done to ensure they are a positive rather than a negative influence to people.
One of the positive impacts that have been associated with playing video games, according to C. Shawn Green, a psychologist at the University of Wisconsin, is increased brain activity. The activity is more important to the brain of a growing child who will develop high thinking and concentration capacity. When playing a video game, a person is supposed to concentrate and think of the next move to ensure victory. The activity involves many brain cells, which are activated in the process. The amounts of prompt activities that are involved in playing video games ensure high concentration. As children play the games, their brains are accustomed to handle concentration and high level thinking which assist them in handling other issues of life (Anderson & Douglas 65). It is believed that children who play video games are very sharp and are able to handle technical subjects such as mathematics and sciences effectively.
Having an aggressive and a determined spirit is one of the essential lessons that a player of the video game has to adopt. Video games have been designed to ensure that the skills are developed over time as the person continues to play the game. For the learners, there is a platform where they begin at a lower level as they climb up the ladder. The sweetness of the game comes when one is able to complete a particular stage with higher grade. Since it is a game, it gives the learner chances to play again and get more scores. When such lessons are applied to real life issues, the players are able to adapt to different issues and show a willingness to succeed in life (Chuang & Wei-Fan 35). A child who develops an aggressive and determined spirit at a young age and applies it to life is able to overcome many challenges that come with life.
Video games are technologically developed and initiated. We are living in a world where almost everything revolved around technology. Video games have become one of the best ways through which a person is introduced and exposed to technology. Children who are exposed to video games at an early stage grow their interest in technology, which they will go ahead to explore with proper guidance and support. With such an early exposure to technology, it encourages innovation as people explore on other technological avenues. Parents will not have to struggle to identify talent and helping children follow a certain a career path due to their interests (Sherry 422). There are different forms of video games and depending on what the child prefers, parents and teachers are able to identify a particular line of interests and hence offering the necessary guidance.
Video games, just like any harmful drug is addictive and hence likely to turn a person into a zombie. The biggest challenge that parents and teachers who have allowed children to play video games is helping them balance their time. The more interests a person develops in video games, the more they want to play. Overindulging in video games is not only harmful to the physical health of people but also their social health. Developments in technology have already caused a serious interaction issue, which is far from being solved. With parents busy with other income generating activities, children are finding video games as a better alternative to boredom. Children who grow up in such environment hence lack proper parental guidance and live in isolation. If urgent measures are not taken, other health issues such as obesity, depression and anxiety crop in (Griffiths 122). Children will find it difficult to associate and socialize in their adult life and likely to resolve to drug abuse.
Most interesting video games involve violent scenes. As they play and enjoy the game, their scores could be based on how many people they harm or even kill in the process. To a growing child, this may imply that for one to succeed in life, then violence will have to be involved. Children who are accustomed to playing violence related video games tend to believe that violence is the order of life. Children are hence likely to practice that in real life just to quench their curiosity (Provenzo 63). They may end up possessing guns at a younger age and even using dangerous weapons to have their way.
Video games were invented with the purpose of giving people an alternative to enjoy play, while indoors. Lack of proper parental guidance has made the whole issue of video games to be mistaken, making it more of a danger than fun, especially to children. With the knowledge on the positive and negative implications of video games, parents can make a wise decision to ensure that the children enjoy the advantages that come with it rather than suffer the negative consequences. There should be a proper and safe age at which children are introduced to games. The choice of games should also be done considerably to avoid an early exposure to violent activities (Ryan, Scott &Andrew 355). Parents should ensure that they understand what the video games are all about before giving them to their children. Proper supervision and guidance should also be exercised as children play. There should also be a limit at the amount of time spent playing the games to minimize on addiction.
Video games become dangerous when they are used as an alternative to other outdoor activities rather than as complementary. Most of the dangers associated with playing video games start to manifest in teenage years when the children are probably already addicted to them. The problem hence begins with parental guidance, which has been neglected in modern society. When children are left to play without supervision, they may not understand what is right or wrong for them. Children are likely to explore beyond what they are supposed to explore and end up in destruction. A constant reminder to the children on the likely dangers of the games will help them take the necessary precautions to ensure balance in their social activities.
Anderson, Craig A., Douglas A. Gentile, and Katherine E. Buckley. Violent video game effects on children and adolescents. New York: Oxford University Press, 2007.
Chuang, Tsung-Yen, and Wei-Fan Chen. "Effect of computer-based video games on children: An experimental study." Digital Game and Intelligent Toy Enhanced Learning, 2007. DIGITEL'07. The First IEEE International Workshop on. IEEE, 2007.
Griffiths, Mark. "Video games and health." Bmj 331.7509 (2005): 122-123.
Provenzo Jr, Eugene F. Video kids: Making sense of Nintendo. Harvard University Press, 1991.
Ryan, Richard M., C. Scott Rigby, and Andrew Przybylski. "The motivational pull of video games: A self-determination theory approach." Motivation and emotion 30.4 (2006): 344-360.
Sherry, John L. "The effects of violent video games on aggression." Human communication research 27.3 (2001): 409-431.