Published on Feb 28, 2022
8 Negative Effects of Video Games | Gaming Addiction
In the present context, video games and kids are closely related and almost inseparable. Video games addiction has resulted in mental, physical, and emotional issues. Due to the same reason, most parents are concerned about the negative effects of video games on their kids.
According to the study published by the Entertainment Software Association, almost 90% of the kids in America play video games.
When video games are played in a controlled manner, that is, about an hour a day, it has a positive impact. It is believed that video games help in kid development and enhance creativity, and it makes kids challenging, enriches motivation, and improves problem-solving capacity.
But, instead of playing games for entertainment and fun purposes, kids are spending too much time playing games. They become video game addicts and are vulnerable to the negative effects of video games.
Why Are Online Video Games Not Good For Kids?
There are both advantages and disadvantages of online gaming. But, spending too much time playing games online is indeed addictive, and it changes the brain's functioning. Though such games help kids develop analytical skills and make them multi-tasking, they suffer from physical weakness and become less active physically, resulting in obesity.
Similarly, kids addicted to online games isolate themselves from the real world. They cannot perform better in school and suffer from various medical issues like back pain, poor sight, headache, body ache, etc. Stick with us to know more about the negative effects of video games in detail.
8 Negative Effects of Video Games
As a parent, you’re responsible for keeping your kids digitally safe and secure. Here are some of the negative effects of video games. Go through the listings and help your kids not to be game addicts.
1. Physical Health Issue
Spending several hours playing online video games results in poor physical health. Today, most kids face the issue of obesity because of them being technologically active. Most of the kids are found behind closed doors playing games and stuff. They develop body aches, headaches, poor body posture, etc.
Kids are technologically sound but physically inactive. They spend less or no time in physical activities, and physical things like taking a walk in the morning or evening, cycling, playing outdoor games, creative games, etc., become boring.
Likewise, kids dealing with being overweight at an early stage are likely to face several health issues further when they are adults. Diabetes, heart problems, and cholesterol are severe long-term health problems they suffer from.
Another negative effect of video games is that video gamers are expected to have difficulty sleeping. Kids and teens who stay up all night or midnight struggle with poor bedtime. For instance, if you're an active player and decide to quit the game for a day or before sleep, you need to try hard to take a nap on that particular day.
Moreover, the main reason for sleep deprivation is brain activity. When you close video games and try to rest, your brain needs to relax. But instead, brain activities are simulated, making you unable to sleep the whole night, which is the primary symptom of insomnia.
Teens who are sufferers of insomnia are never productive during the daytime. Too much exposure to blue light and radiation from devices keeps them exhausted and ineffective.
3. Lack of Concentration
The more you’re focused on playing video games, the less you cannot concentrate on other activities. You need complete focus when you’re gaming, and if you’re not playing for a certain time, you’ll still be mentally caught up with video games.
Paying attention and concentration more to video games makes you less focused on other stuff such as studying, eating, or even sleeping. You won’t concentrate on school work that eventually hampers your adult life when working on a career.
Likewise, lack of paying attention is a crucial negative effect of video games as when you’re a game addict; you get inadequate energy for physical activities. If you’re talking to your parents or friends, you pretend to listen to them, but you think about gaming half of the time.
4. Poor Academic Performance
If your kid spends several hours playing video games with prolonged screen time, then most probably they have poor academic performance. They are preoccupied with gaming hence giving less concentration to their schoolwork and assignments.
The kids playing video games don’t complete their school projects or assignments most of the time. The ones trying to work on school stuff are distracted by their gaming activities as they think about games the whole time. They show low academic performance at school with degrading grades.
Likewise, a game-addicted kid might even argue with you for not going to school often. Such activities are likely to hamper those kids when they grow up as adults. It is so because academically backward are demotivated when they’re supposed to establish a career profile.
5. Lead to Social Isolation
If your kid has been addicted to video games lately, you may have noticed them trying to be socially disconnected. Social isolation is one of the harsh negative effects of video games as it ruins the healthy bonds between family and friends.
Those into online video games have more robust virtual connections than social connections. They prefer to make friends online as they meet numerous people online while playing games. Besides, they slowly keep their distance between their parents and school friends.
Moreover, socially disconnected kids for a longer time makes it difficult even to have physical conversations. Most of the time, they ignore physical meetings, don’t have enough skills to make social connections, and are often less interested and shy, resulting in poor social relationships.
6. Risk of Online Predators
Kids into video games have a high risk of encountering online predators or scammers. Most of the video games online are played in multiplayer mode. When kids interact with unknown players, they might become their gaming friends after playing a few games together. Such people might have an evil face behind who turns out to be an online predator.
In addition, kids being sensitive and immature, tend to share their personal information online, including their real identity, address, credit card details, and so on, making them vulnerable to predators. Later on, those scammers or sexual predators might blackmail them, sending offensive audio or video and making irrelevant contact.
Besides, most video games have in-built chat apps. Having chat in-game lets kids learn bad languages. Since they are unknown about the behavior of a person they meet while gaming, kids may fall in bad company welcoming online threats by themselves.
7. Anxiety and Depression
Online gaming, to some extent, is suitable for kids to learn several life skills, concentrate, multitask and make the brain active. However, gaming addiction gives the exact opposite result that affects the brain. Those who are game freaks are the ones suffering from anxiety and depression.
They are always fearful of any circumstances as they won’t get enough energy and boldness to cope with ongoing situations. Lower self-esteem, negative thoughts, and lack of ability to succeed on specific things are common mental impacts online video gamers face.
Excessive gaming leads to depletion of mental health and affects the brain hence having anxiety and depression. Video games can be an effective way to get away from psychological trauma. But, the ones realizing the negative effects of video games and planning to quit on the opposition are psychologically hampered, later on, causing anxiety and depression.
8. Increased Aggressive Behaviors
Finally, another harsh negative effect of video games is increased aggression. Suitable video games for the right amounts of time are good for a kid's mental health. But, if your kids are into aggressive and violent shooter games such as inappropriate Roblox games, they end up developing aggressive behaviors.
Kids who deal with increased aggression impacted by video games find everything as trouble. When things don't go according to their plan, it becomes difficult to control their mental state. Violent shooter games constantly enrich aggressive thoughts and behavior, unsuitable for kids and teenagers.
Similarly, increased aggression among kids makes everything irritating. Even if you try to talk to them, they respond aggressively as if every word you say is against them. Therefore, ensure that your kids play nonviolent games.
When played in a controlled way, video games undoubtedly benefit physical and mental health. However, gaming addiction concludes with several negative effects of video games. Before online games create psychological pain for your kid, make sure they are gaming in moderation for defined constraints.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is the gaming community toxic?
The gaming community for sure creates a toxic environment. It is so because no one wants the other to be better than themselves, so whenever video gamers meet good competition, they develop a sense of fear and weakness. Such reactions create negative thoughts and emotions towards downgrading others.
Do video games enhance critical thinking skills?
Video games are a suitable platform for developing critical thinking skills. Gaming requires concentration and the motivation for winning a game makes it challenging for kids to conquer things in real-life. However, parents are responsible for scheduling a healthy timetable for gameplay, excluding violent and aggressive game types.