How to prevent addiction to video games in summer

Summer and free time are synonymous. After many days of study, school work and dedication to academic work, students face the summer with a great leisure offer to occupy these hours. Among all this catalog are the video game, an option that can trigger a dependence on them and that is even considered a mental illness by the World Health Organization, WHO.

Given so many free hours, young people can end up generating this dependency on video game. Hours and hours in front of the screen can make students neglect other areas of their lives. In order to avoid this addiction, the Catalan Association of Social Addictions, ACENCAS, gives several tips to parents so that their children can enjoy the summer without these problems.

Avoid excessive use

While ACENCAS recognizes that video games can become a form of training for the mind, "its excessive use, can generate serious health problems"This offer of digital leisure contains elements with the capacity to generate a dependency on the youngest children, causing young people to lose track of time and dedicate too many hours.

Among the reasons that cause this dependency to be generated, ACENCAS highlights the search for evasion of problems in young people, whether of a family nature or of a social nature. The attempt to achieve positive emotions through digital leisure makes many hours are dedicated to video games and less those associated with activities such as sports or interpersonal relationships.

"They are constantly in front of the screen, a quick meal without dialogue with the rest of the family, it is the solution they apply, so as not to stop playing," he explains. Francesc Perendreu, president of ACENCAS. Among the risks associated with this dependence are heart diseases, hypertension, high cholesterol levels and obesity, associated with sedentary lifestyle, which may lead to myocardial infarction in young adulthood.

Similarly, cases of addiction can cause sleep disturbances and a state of constant nervousness for the exaggerated use of consoles. At the same time, excessive use of video games can cause children to face greater social isolation. Anxiety, irritability and anger are other symptoms that cause dependence, as well as a high percentage of school failure.

Advice for parents

The increase of free time in summer makes it more possible for children to develop an addiction to video games by using these products as a formula to remedy the feeling of boredom. Therefore, from ACENCAS, these tips are offered so that parents can to prevent this situation their homes:

- Help children choose appropriate games with which they can also have fun. Know the characteristics of the product and the possible effects on the child.

- Talk with them about the content of the games, so they can understand the difference between imagination and reality. The digital world is not the real one and that is not where they should solve their problems.

- Set aside the solitary game. If you can play in the company of a friend or relative, much better, this way a social activity will develop.

- Monitor the obsessive game and set a time limit to use video games and days a week. If you notice an abuse of these technologies, better cut at the root.

- Share games with other physical and social activities.

Damián Montero

Video: 10 Addicting Games That Are Impossible To Stop Playing

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