COVID-19 Update: I have openings for tele-therapy (video or phone sessions) and would be honoured to support you during this time of uncertainty. I use a secure online video platform called OnCall Health.
Getting your teen help for video game addiction is the first step to take. But you may be wondering, “Is gaming addiction really that big of a deal?” Yes, it is that big of a deal. Gaming addiction can have serious physical, emotional, and social consequences.
But what makes a game addictive? Are there certain characteristics that make some games more addictive than others? Why are some teens more susceptible than others to this kind of addiction?
How can parents prevent such addiction from happening? You have to know your child/teen. Not every child/teen who plays video games will become an addict. Not every family will have this problem. Experts say that only 10% of gamers exhibit addictive behaviours. The other 90% of parents don’t have to worry.
As a parent, you need to know the signs of game addiction.
The more of these signs you can identify, the greater the need to get professional help:
There also are physical symptoms that may point to addiction:
Also, some children/teens are more prone to addiction. Some of the characteristics are:
What do you do when a lot of these signs are showing or about to show in your child/teen?
What other activities can you put in place of video games that can keep your child/teen interested and occupied?
Children or teens that play four to five hours per day have little time for socializing, doing homework, or playing sports. Kicking the habit is hard, too. Video game and computer addicts can’t just avoid computers. They need to use them for homework and communication with friends.
Most important, you should help your child/teen find alternatives to video games. Try to get them to participate in sports, join the school band or an after school club, or just play outside with the neighbours. Don’t be afraid of the words, “I’m bored”. The truth is, if they get bored enough, they’ll find something to do. You can always offer to give them some extra chores.
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