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The Psychological Effect of Excessive Online Gaming in Teens and Children

7 March 2012 Real Virtual Reality: The Psychological Effect of Excessive Online Gaming in Teens and Children Droning away on the computer next to me, my friend is able to completely zone out his surroundings; with each click of the mouse, he is exclusively in the virtual world he creates.His constant need to disappear from society and to construct his own, compels me to question the reason of why he’s doing what exactly he is doing.I do not have an answer why he does what he does but at least he’s doing something that he can be good at.

However the reasons could be from a feeling of detachment from society or running away from a deeper problem that is put deep inside oneself and not directly confronted.

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Gaming is not the problem. It is merely something that is used to console and comfort. The excessive use of it, however, is what can hold harmful effects to normal behavior and social attitudes. It could turn into developing real psychological problems like social awkwardness , depression, difficulty in a job enviroment and relationships, being disconnected from reality and in some cases can develop into antisocial disorders. Meek 2) With the number of gamers and games increasing each year, (Sinclair) changes need to be done for our future generations to be more engaged and more responsive with society. Beginning with parenting in such way that sets a good example of what it means to be a responsible and productive citizen, such as active parenting and atively pursuing a better responive citizen. Raising children is indeed extremely difficult, time consuming, emotionally and physically exhausting, and is something to not to be considered lightly before having a child or children.

To raise a child, is not only providing for their needs and showing affection, but also shaping the next generation of our society and what we as humans leave behind. An example is a very powerful and useful tool that we possess. A young child is very apt to learn and react to each and everything a parent does or does not do. From learning from subtle signals or gestures, to the life lessons and values that they will carry on with them to adulthood. Good parenting and good teaching does not simply mean turning kids loose.

Good parents and good teachers need to do become more educated about what children and adolescents struggle with to become the best parent they can be. Although gaming might not always be the first choice as parents, parents spend a lot of time at soccer games and violin recitals and other things that is done not because they like them necessarily but because they matter to their kids. (Zur (a) 53) Many children find a sense of power and excitement in games. There is certainly nothing wrong with wanting power. However, the child may also be avoiding something undesirable in offline life, and dive into games to flee the real world.

They can get caught up in this fantasy world that keeps them out of real life responsibilities and become addicted to the online world. An addiction the same as caffeine and nicotine. This may be affecting the child’s psychological and physical well-being. Growing children and teens need face-to-face interaction to develop healthly emotional, spiritual, social and sexually and too much time at the computer and not enough sunshine, exercise, physical contact, and face-to-face interaction can leave children and teens lacking in social skills and other development.

Which can cause an over dependence on technology. The inability to relate or communicate effectively face-to-face alienates and isolates them from society. (Zur (c) 6) As video games become more realistic, their place in society becomes more apparent and at a level that is bigger than ever before imagined. We’ve all seen or heard stories about certain people that commit terrible acts allegedly under the influence of video games. It is easy to assume that fantasy gaming is “bad” or “harmful.   Indeed, it’s human nature to demonize what we don’t understand and fing a place for it that is away from sight and away from being affected by it. It seems to many that even “healthy” fantasy like reading Harry Potter books or sketching dungeons with pencils has to be better than fantasy like World of Warcraft, which numbs minds, sucks the imagination, and has no redeeming value. Whether it be, parenting in a way that promotes more social activity, self realization of how the excess of gaming can effect oneself, or the herapeutic procedures that can help alleviate from the trap of becoming addicted to the virtual world. Gilsdof said it best when we said, “Online gaming is not the problem, it is how people use it. Addiction is never in the object, the addiction is in the relationship one has with the object. Change begins in the person not the object”. (Gilsdof) Works Cited page Gamespot. Brendan Sinclair. 2008. Gamespot Inc. 3 March 2012. < http://www. gamespot. com/news/npd-72-percent-of-us-are-gamers-6188668>

Psych Central, Online Gaming Addicition. Will Meek, Ph. D. Psych Central. 3 March 2012 Psychology Today,. Ethan Gilsdof. Psychology Today. 3 March 2012. Richard Allan Bartle. Hearts, Clubs, Diamonds, Spade: Players Who Suit MUDs. Essex, UK: Muse Ltd. 1999 Zur Institute on the Internet. (a) Ofer Zur, Ph. D. 2011. Zur Institute LLC. 3 March 2012. Zur, Ofer, Ph. D. (b) The Adventure of Online Gaming. New York: Random House, 2003 Zur, Ofer, Ph. D. (c) Handling Internet Addiction Dissorder, (IAD) Chicago: University of Chicago Publishing, 2001

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