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Video Game Addiction in Children

Video games can be used to promote learning, develop hand-eye coordination, and to allow provide an entertaining break from busy school schedules. But elementary-aged school kids can become addicted to video games and can exhibit signs of moderate to serious video game addiction. Parents, of course, have the responsibility of monitoring how often kids play video games and which games they play. But what should parents do when recreation turns into addiction?

When a Video Game is No Longer Just a Game

Video game addiction symptoms are common among children, and every day, kids get hooked on the latest new game. If you suspect your elementary-age child may be suffering from video game addiction, the first step to helping him is to determine just how bad his addiction is. Video Game Addiction Symptoms:

  • Test the waters. Does your child like playing games, or does he have to play games? If his addiction is not pronounced, it may be something that you can conquer together. If it has gotten too far out of hand, you may want to get in touch with a therapist who has experience dealing with children addicted to video games.
  • Keep busy. For many kids, a video game addiction begins because the child has nothing better to do. Kids who aren't involved in after school activities may rely on video games as their primary source of entertainment. By encouraging your child to enroll in extracurricular programs, you can help take his mind off the game.
  • Enforce restrictions. If your child's video game addiction has become a major issue, weaning him off of the game will take time and a great deal of effort. At the foundation of any intervention must be your commitment to enforcing restrictions on video game play.

Getting Over Video Games: Healing and Recovery

Just like any other addiction, a child who suffers from an addiction to video games will need to heal after losing that part of his life. No child is going to react in a positive way to having his games taken from him or restricted, but, if you can stay focused on the positive and allow your child to heal by finding other activities that spark his interest, recovery from video game addiction can become a reality.