PC. MAC. Wii. Playstation. Xbox. These are the current trends in the world of electronic gaming. Exciting games like World of Warcraft, Call of Duty, Grand Theft Auto and Madden all suck our children into spending more than half of their 24-hour day in front of the computer monitor or television turned mega-arcade! This may be good when mom is rushing about trying to finish those house chores before dad comes home from work or company arrives for dinner; less noise, less goofing around, less clutter in the living room. But wait! Let me ask, is this really beneficial to our kids?

Gaming Addiction

Locked in front of the screen for a longer time than an 9-5 employee? Ignoring hunger and staying off thirst?. Not wanting to take a shower because one was just taken last Tuesday? Refusing to go to the bathroom? All of this simply because the child doesn’t want to interrupt the continuity of the game currently being played! Addiction? Yes. It is one.

Based on an article that was published by MSNBC, up to 90 percent of American youngsters play video games and as many as 15 percent of them – more than 5 million kids may be addicted, according to data cited in the AMA council’s report. The said article has also highlighted some recorded cases of gaming addictions such as the following:

A 13-year-old identified only as Ian told of playing video games for nearly 12 hours straight; said he felt suicidal and wondered if he was addicted.

Joyce Protopapas of Frisco, Texas, said her 17-year-old son, Michael, was a video addict. Over nearly two years, video and Internet games transformed him from an outgoing, academically gifted teen into a reclusive manipulator who flunked two 10th grade classes and spent several hours day and night playing a popular online video game called World of Warcraft.

The above cases are real and are the glaring truth about the psychological effects of gaming addictions. Health wise, it is worse. Why? Aside from developing eye and vision problems from too much television exposure, these games let our kids do nothing but sit in front of the console for long periods of time just as like a couch potato. Obesity! should now be flashing in our minds in bright neon light. Worse yet, we parents seems to be encouraging the encroachment of childhood obesity into our children’s lives!

Have you tried observing your kids while playing Super Mario Brothers Smash in front of your television panel? They are indeed enjoying themselves, no question about it! But have you noted the posture? Hunched back, head buried between the shoulders, arms and fingers in a very unnatural position as they button mash Y! The only brief moment of exercise coming when they leap up and jump to and fro with excitement because they just slew the major boss of level four. Now tell me, are you looking at the next Gollum, or Pillsbury Doughboy?!

Most of us would probably say we can’t you do anything about it. What?! Of course you can. You are the parent and definitely, you have to be in control. You need to take the child out of that health hazard and lead them into healthier lifestyle. A lifestyle of fitness, confidence, and discipline available at Scranton MMA!

(join us for part two for more information on ways for your child to beat the gaming addiction)