Are Video Games Harmful to Children?

I don’t know about your family, but the members of my family LOVE to play video games, especially ones that involve lots of weapons and blood. And it is not just my boys who are addicted to them, it’s also my husband (sigh). Although I attempt to stem their game playing by hiding the controllers, rolling my eyes, and making them complete all of their homework and chores before they play, none of this has lessened their love of video games. The only thing it has done is make me the mean mom.

So are video games harmful? I am certainly no expert, but here are my observations.

Can playing video games cause my child to be obese? Spending long periods of time playing these games reduces physical activity and is likely to increase the risk of obesity. But if your F95ZONE children, like mine, are heavily involved in team sports and other physical activities, it is not as much of a concern. However, if your children are not active and spend the vast majority of their free time playing video games and snacking on junk food while playing, you might consider reducing or curbing them altogether.

Can playing video games cause my child to be violent? I have not observed increased violence in my children as a result of playing video games. Maybe the reason is because they’re too busy lounging around in front of the game console to go beat up on the neighbor’s kids! In any event, they have not gotten in trouble yet, so I do not think they cause violence.

Can playing video games reduce academic performance? Look, if your child is spending time playing video games instead of doing homework, studying, or reading, then it can hurt his or her school performance. However, if your child is told in no uncertain terms that these games are not allowed until school work is completed and that it is much more important and must always come first, game playing is unlikely to have a negative impact. It all depends on how much your child is playing and whether his or her priorities are set straight.

Can playing video games make my kid antisocial? It depends. I guess if they’re spending long hours alone in a dark room, that is certainly possible. However, my children frequently invite their friends to the house to play these games together, making it a social activity. And even when no friends are over, my they are often playing multi-player games remotely with their friends or talking to their friends through a headset while they are playing the game.

While parents like me gripe about video games, there are actually some benefits to playing them. Indeed, playing them can improve hand-eye coordination, promote problem solving and logic, attention to detail, quick thinking, decision-making, memory, and following instructions. Moreover, strategy games like Age of Empires (one of my family’s favorites) can teach players to manage resources, build cities, and pique their interest in historical figures.

Anything can be harmful if done to excess. As long as my family’s game playing is done in moderation, they can continue. Believe me, there are a lot worse things they could be doing with their time. Besides, your children might be aspiring video game testers or designers, in which case you might as well give them a leg up in their future career.

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