Alarming Symptoms of Video Game Addiction That Ring the Warning Bells
The video game industry is a $100 billion industry and only growing. With the increase in ease of access, the number of people playing video games in the U.S. alone is 150 million. Most of them are teenagers, and about 3% to 4% become gaming addicts. While the numbers may not be alarming, it can become a cause for concern for those parents who have a video game addict at home.
Earlier, one had to go to the gaming arcade to play video games, then came the ones that you could connect to your television, followed by the computer. With the advent of smartphones, video games are not available 24/7 within the palm of your hand. So, you see how easy it has become for children to become addicted to gaming. If you notice any of the following symptoms of video game addiction in your child, then the warning bells should go off.
Preoccupation with Gaming
When your child is addicted to video games, he/she will be preoccupied with gaming all the time. Gaming will take priority over other tasks. The child will want to finish whatever chores they have as quickly as possible to get to their video game. They will neglect their homework, personal hygiene, physical discomfort, and grooming because of these preoccupations.
Poor Academic Performance
Gaming addicts are known to overlook their academic performance. They are thinking about getting to their video game and are unable to concentrate in class. They may not do their homework or finish it carelessly to get to their game. Such students are unable to focus in class because all they can think about is going back to their game.
Disinterest Or Awkwardness In Social Setting
When a child is suddenly disinterested in social contact or awkward in such settings, then it can be a sign of addiction. When children become addicted to gaming, they will lose interest in all social contact. They will consider it a waste of precious time that could have been spent playing a video game.
Downplaying the Addiction
An addict will tend to downplay their addiction. This goes for children with video game addiction. They will lie about the time spent playing the game, and try to hide when they are playing. They will also stay up late at night to play without being detected.
Sleeplessness, Agitation, and Emotional Outbursts
Many video games contain violent and harmful content that can leave children agitated and upset. Also their addiction can cause sleeplessness as they tend to play into the wee hours of the night.Also, when children are not given access to video games, they become aggressive or emotionally withdrawn. If these signs appear suddenly, then, they may be the symptoms of video game addiction.
Loss of Interest in Creative Activities
Children begin to lose interest in creative activities and hobbies. Their brain is more tuned toward the gameplay of the video game and start living in the fantasy world of the game.When any of these symptoms of video game addiction begin to appear suddenly or gradually, then you need to plan an intervention. Early detection and counseling can help your child overcome this addiction.