Video game depression, loneliness and addiction: Do you wonder if these gamer pastimes are more than a habit. That is not really good for your child mental health. If a kid spends hours on end with a controller in his hand, it might be a sign that things aren’t okay.“Let me tell you this: if you meet a loner, no matter what they tell you. It’s not because they enjoy solitude. It’s because they have tried to blend into the world before, and people continue to disappoint them.”― Jodi Picoult, My Sister’s Keeper
Video Game depression triggers
Playing video game may help with depression temporary, but it cannot be the solutions or cure all. Developing friendship and interacting with adults and their peers is very important for a growing child. I know, I know. You probably suspected as much, and might’ve been worried about your child or teens’ gaming. But… it’s not as simple as you might think. In fact, video game addiction is a recognized disorder by the World Health Organization.
Teens and video game depression alone.
First thing, if it’s interactive gaming, it could be pretty normal, healthy behavior. Interactive online games, or playing with or against friends who’re physically present is the way kids do things nowadays. Nothing’s wrong with that. But isolated gamers… that’s another story.
Video game depression
A study by Dr. Michelle Colder Carras found that kid gamers with less (in-game) interaction with others. Showed more signs of depression: boys tended towards anxiety and loneliness and girls had lower self-esteem.
Video game players don’t interact with each others.
What this means is the reason the playing is what distinguishes healthy gaming from unhealthy gaming. Using games to interact with friends, make new ones, and have fun? That’s good! Using games to escape the real world for a while, and coping with loneliness and the difficulties of life? Not so good.
Depression & video game use.
Researchers have disagreed about whether video game addiction causes depression, is caused by, or are concurrent. One thing is for sure though: They’re definitely related. Don’t blame gaming, though; lots of things are related to or expressions of depression.
Gaming video does not replace people.
Leaving your child alone in front of the xbox does not replace real interaction with human beings. Other kids best to develop social skills. Okay, so now it might be time to reconsider how you keep your kid occupied. Or, entertained when you’re busy. Dropping the latest video game in front of them might not be the best idea.
The child needs video game syndrome.
When what they need is time and attention from loved ones. Far too often, video games are little more than a way parents and guardians neglect their kids. Again, video games aren’t a bad thing. In fact, it might be a good idea to pick up the controller and let your kid show you a thing or two about the latest racing game or 2-player RPG. Just make sure you’re spending time with your kids. It’s important.
Playing Video game depression, addiction & low self esteem.
Anyway, back to gaming itself. Dr. Carras found that older kids usually can tell if their gaming practices are unhealthy. Younger ones… not so much. If your kid is addicted to gaming, they might show these symptoms:
- Irritability when unable to play, and fixation on the next gaming opportunity
- Ignoring personal hygiene, meals, and sleep
- Isolation from family and friends because they’re spending so much time gaming
- Lying about how long they game
Playing video interactive games obsessions.
As with any addiction, it might be tricky for family and friends to identify. Addicts are often tricky. But if it is identified (by a professional), it’s important to work on identifying and working on the underlying causes, too. Meaning, why did it come to this? Why did this young mind run to gaming as an escape?
Fixation on winning at all cost!
Not only that but the consequences of excessive gaming have to be dealt with. If you find that your child is addicted to gaming, they’ll need your support to get through it. Don’t judge, or accuse, but let them know you’re there for them. That’s all they really need.