An Unbiased look at the Epidemic of Video Games in Our Youth


An Unbiased look at the Epidemic of Video Games in Our Youth

Since the creation of video-games, parents, and children alike have been wondering about the usefulness, and disadvantages of playing these technology-based diversions. If moderated, games can be a great medium for social bonding, and an outlet for a well deserved break. Recently many studies have been released showing many effects of playing video-games, and many times, their data is misinterpreted. Instead of taking the radical approach to denying the advantages of playing video-games, or even proclaiming them as the savior for today’s youth, it is necessary to take the middle road, and adjust it according to your own values.

On one social aspect, video-games are a great way to enhance friendship, or even make new relationships. By sitting down to a nice game of Madden 06 (A football game) or even playing co-op mode on Halo 2 (a first person shooter), you can develop bonds between you and your partner. By playing these games you are working on your teamwork, it being necessary to be corporative and work out a game plan to win. However you can also play on opposite teams in Madden 06, or even fight against each other in Halo 2. If taken too seriously, this can prove to be harmful to a relationship. Nonetheless, usually these games provide a light healthy competition, and hopefully allow the loser (and winner) to practice sportsmanship skills.

Unfortunately there are also negative effects on social behavior, almost directly linked to playing too many video-games. Many times, if gamers become too obsessed, playing some single-player games could cause social-isolation. These games (if abused) could take time away from being with friends and plant gamers in front of a screen. At an early age this could prove very harmful as kids are still learning better social behavior and skills. Becoming “addicted” to video-games could cause a child to grow up as an introvert, shy, and/or anti-social.

Another ill-affect of video-games besides the social health of gamers is there physical health. Many conditions and injuries have been linked to repetitive use of video games. Some of them include: Eye Strains, Wrist/ Neck/ injuries, Back Pain, Photosensitive Epilepsy, Headaches, nerve and muscle damage, and even hallucinations! Currently researchers are examining the effect of video-games on obesity, and whether it is a factor. Even though these alone sound like a reason enough to eradicate video-games you must look at the conditions of the studies performed to come to these conclusions. Many of these injuries are very rare, and you also must examine the word repetitively. Most of the cases of an injury or disease as a result of playing video-games happened because the person was playing too much. Therefore with moderation, one can enjoy video-games with a much lower risk of besetting one of these injuries

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