STOP WORRYING: Research Shows It Is Okay to Let Your Kids Play Video Games
As the current coronavirus pandemic continues to play out across the world, many people are turning to new forms of entertainment to keep themselves busy as they are unable to see family and friends. One of the biggest things people have turned to are video games.
Video games have had a rough go of it over the past couple of decades. The media, government, and plenty of other factors have caused parents to be suspicious of games and their effects on children.
With every mass shooting or violent event that happens, games have been put on the spot as the reason they are happening. There has been this continual argument that violent video games are causing kids to become violent. President Trump has been a frequent opponent to games, stating that they have an irreversible effect on the youth.
But what is the data to support this?
Well, there isn’t really anything to back it up. In fact, more evidence suggests that video games are not linked to violent crimes at all.
Just this year, the APA, the American Psychological Association, admitted that violent video games could not be linked to acts of aggression, except for mild aggression. But even their media psychology division expressed concern over their stance on that, saying the evidence was weak and inconsistent.
The opinion on the matter remains split, with the WHO making “gaming disorder” a real condition, but even that has been met with criticism. What a lot of experts say is that pathological gaming is more indicative of an underlying issue, rather than the issue itself.
That is the thing we want to stress: video games do play an effect on children, but they are not the issue. If a child is experiencing violent outbursts, then the odds are that there is an underlying issue there already that needs to be addressed.
Many kids use video games and gaming platforms to stay connected and socialize with their friends. Especially in times like now, when we are all cut off from others, games are the way we can interact with our loved ones and entertain ourselves. They can be an outlet for anxiety and stress, giving them a feeling of control, and it can help them develop cognitive abilities and hand-eye coordination.
We always encourage parents to be aware of what their kids are playing or watching, but we also want them to know that video games are not inherently bad.
So let them play right now. Maybe even join in yourself.
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