Cause and Impact of Video Games Addiction
Some children get into bad habits with their homework because they become preoccupied with TV programs or video games. Some middle school children become sidetracked by their social life or by sports. Other children who find schoolwork difficult would simply rather play. If parents help these children cut back other activities to reasonable amounts and count on the teacher to grade the child's efforts on schoolwork and homework, most of these children will improve. Motivation for good grades eventually comes from a desire to please the teacher and be admired by peers, enjoyment in knowing things, ability to see studying as a pathway to a future career, knowledge that she needs a 3-point grade average to get into college, and her own self-reproach when she falls short of her goals.
Like related forms of media, computer and video games have been the subject of frequent controversy and censorship, due to the depiction of graphic violence, sexual themes, Advergaming (a form of advertising in games), consumption of illegal drugs, consumption of alcohol or tobacco, propaganda, or profanity in some games. Among others, critics of video games sometimes include parents' groups, politicians, organized religion groups, and other special interest groups, even though all of these can be found in all forms of entertainment and media. Various games have been accused of causing addiction to such and even violent behavior.
Moreover, it appears to be a question of age. Since these art forms have been around longer, the backlash against them occurred farther in the past, beyond the remembrance of today's youth.We have lots of violence in multiple media, including TV, movies, video games and music, and that violence does affect kids. There’s a tendency to discount that as significant. For example, there’s some evidence that some of these video games actually teach kids weapon-related skills.
Dr. Anderson and colleagues have shown that playing a lot of violent video games is related to having more aggressive thoughts, feelings, and behaviors (Anderson & Bushman, 2001). Furthermore, playing violent games is also related to children being less willing to be caring and helpful towards their peers. Importantly, research has shown that these effects happen just as much for non-aggressive children as they do for children who already have aggressive tendencies
One study found that kids who spend more time playing violent video games are more hostile and more likely to argue than other teens. Another study showed that kids who play violent games for less than 10 minutes tended to act aggressively shortly after playing.
The research also showed that playing violent video games may be more harmful for kids than watching violence on TV, the APA said. Because video games involve kids in practicing repeated acts of violence, and often reward them for it, the games make the violence more realistic and intensify the kids' learning of violent behavior.Moreover,Middle school students who spend their after-school hours watching cable TV programs and playing video games could see their school performance suffer.
Researchers say they've found another reason why video games are so hard to give up: They may help fulfill basic psychological needs.
In a study,about the issue of Motivation and Emotion, investigators from the University of Rochester and Immersyve Inc. looked at what motivated 1,000 gamers to keep playing video games.
"We think there's a deeper theory than the fun of playing," lead investigator Richard Ryan, a motivational psychologist at Rochester, said in a prepared statement.
The gamers were divided into four groups, each asked to play different games. They answered questionnaires both before and after playing the games. The researchers used the questionnaires to look at the underlying motives and satisfactions that can spark players' interests and sustain them during play.
The researchers found that the games can provide opportunities for achievement, freedom and even a connection to other players. Those benefits trumped a shallow sense of fun, which doesn't keep gamers as interested. Players reported feeling the best when the games produced positive experiences and challenges that connected to what they knew in the real world.
"It's our contention that the psychological 'pull' of games is largely due to their capacity to engender feelings of autonomy, competence and relatedness," said Ryan. He believes that video games not only motivate further play but "also can be experienced as enhancing psychological wellness, at least short-term."
For the participants who played massively multiplayer online, or MMO, games -- which are capable of supporting hundreds of thousands of players simultaneously -- the need for relatedness emerged "as an important satisfaction that promotes a sense of presence, game enjoyment and an intention for future play," the researchers found.
Ryan pointed out that while not all video games are able to satisfy basic psychological needs, "those that do may be the best at keeping players coming back."
Video games do have ratings to indicate when they have violence, strong language, mature sexual themes, and other content that may be inappropriate for your child. The ratings, established for the Entertainment Software Review Board, range from EC (meaning Early Childhood) - which indicates that the game is appropriate for kids ages 3 and older - to AO (for Adults Only) - which indicates that violent or graphic sexual content makes it appropriate only for adults.
Monitor how the games are affecting your child. If your child seems more aggressive after spending time playing a certain game, it's a good idea to discuss the game and help your child understand how the violence that's portrayed is different from what occurs in the real world. By doing that, you can help your child identify less with the aggressive characters and reduce the negative effects that the violent video games can have, according to the AAP(The American Academy of Pediatrics) .
AAP recommends that kids older than 2 years spend no more than 2 hours watching TV or movies or playing video games daily. The authors further suggest limiting media use to no more than 1 hour on school nights, and restricting access to adult media — including cable movie channels and R-rated movies and videos — to support better school performance.
One of the easiest ways to get the family moving is to encourage playing outside during the day. “Limiting the amount of TV children watch, video games they play or the amount of computer time they have is really an important part of the parents' responsibility to get their kids moving,”