The popularity of video games is on the rise pan globe and is increasing by leaps and bounds with each passing year. As everything has its pros and cons so is the case with video games too. They have many devastating effects on the health in the long run so there has been a growing concern worldwide about the health hazards associated with the video games.
Health Hazards Associated With Playing Video Games
It has been seen that action packed video games or those associated with the warfare are increasing the element of violence and aggression in the players, particularly in the kids. In childhood, the tender mind is quite susceptible and can be compared to soft clay that can be moulded in any manner.
When they see their superhero or the protagonist sweeping their enemies, they try to imitate their actions in the real world.Indulging in games involving a lot of killing and shooting excites anger and irritation and makes them more aggressive and intolerant to the views of others. It may have catastrophic results; as such people may become extremists or even terrorists later in life. The brains of kids are in a stage of development so they are quite impressionable and more vulnerable to such negative emotions.
Furthermore, the situation is made more complex by the fact that in the gaming scenario the act of violence gets rewarded and they get kudos, the children playing the game are motivated to repeat it. Winning in such games boosts their morale and many of them start feeling that killing, battering and physical assaults are normal and may end up in fighting and injuring their peers or family members. The worst part is that after clobbering or indulging in physical violence they do not feel guilty or even after they calm down they do not repent on their behaviour.
Interesting video games keep people hooked to their consoles for hours altogether so the work of a person suffers. This is a problem experienced by gamers of all ages from adolescents to teenagers to busy professionals alike. They are sort of hypnotized by the games and become addicted to it.
In this regards I would like to give my own example, in my internship at medical college I was so addicted the game Re-Mission that I would spend the whole night playing it. As a result I was unable to work properly and used to feel tired all day long. On some days I would give lame excuses for getting a leave so that I could sleep peacefully during the day hours.
Then one fine day my dean called me and gave me a stern warning and I felt so mortified that I decided to mend my ways. But frankly speaking, getting rid of the temptation to play video games was one of the toughest challenges I have ever faced.
Any Scientific Study?
According to a research analysis, poor academic performance is linked with playing video games. As students waste a lot of their valuable time on playing games, they often ignore their studies, resulting in bad grades in college/school. Intriguing games like Diablo, or Dungeon Siege or Marvel: Ultimate Alliance makes them come home early in order to continue playing the video game.
So, even if you are not physically playing the game you are actually playing the game as 24X7 your mind is preoccupied with it. Dedicated gamers may even fall prey to problems like sleeplessness, poor appetite, eating disorders, insomnia, confusion, irritability and poor concentration.
There is a wide array of the disorders affecting the physical health of a person, associated with video gaming for hours altogether at a stretch on a regular basis. Neuromuscular problems like lumbar and cervical spondylosis, backaches, postural disorders, attacks of migraine and tension headaches are triggered by them.
High blood pressure in the young adults and increased heart rate are some of the serious health hazards that are related with playing video games for a long time. As they involve the continuous use of fingers (so carpals and metacarpals are inflamed), hence such gamers often develop carpal tunnel syndrome, which results in excruciating pain when you try to type or work with your fingers and wrists.
Obesity = Devil
Obesity is a big menace affecting people from all walks of life and diverse geographical backgrounds, video game players are more vulnerable to it as they spend hours on their seats. Video games do not require much physical activity hence in the longer run they may cause a person to pile on pounds of fat.
Childhood obesity is increasing at an alarming rate especially in the developed countries and video games are encouraging the unhealthy trend of sitting with the video console and not playing outdoor games that burn a lot of calories, thereby resulting in weight gain.
Video gaming has far more negative consequences on the social health of a person. Sincere gamers are more prone to become loners as they are physically cut-off from the society and become contended in their own virtual world of games. A few years ago my sister who was famous in her peer group for her amiable and gregarious nature, used to barely come out of her room and started spending a large fraction of time on her console.
In the beginning we assumed it is due to the pressure of studies, but when her friends started complaining that nowadays she remains silent and aloof and is always ready to go home after college as early as possible, I became curious to know the reason.
She had always been an affectionate sister and a chatterbox but to my surprise I discovered that now she was hardly seen on the dinner table and most of the time she was in her room playing the video game ‘Return to Castle Wolfenstein ‘. My mother took a firm stance and removed the gaming console from her room.
It was quite an uphill task for her to resist the temptation of not being able to play the game. But, after struggling for many weeks she finally learned to control her urge of playing video games and once again she was back to her normal self a bubbly, cheerful and socially active person.Racing games such as ‘Need for Speed’ prompt the players towards rash driving and trying stunts on bikes. Such youngsters indulge in rash driving as they are fanatic about speed and are more prone to accidents.
In the recent past the incidents of road accidents have soared up and racing video games are adding fuel to the fire. Video games if played for a short while are a good source of entertainment but like excess of everything is bad so in the case with them too.
Once a person starts playing them it becomes a vicious circle, and they play continuously for hours on an everyday basis. Gamers become addicted to it and find it nearly impossible to resist the temptation exposing them to the health hazards associated with video gaming and over a period of time they spoil their health on the physical, mental, social and emotional or psychological plane.