Video games are a part of today’s modern world. If you look around you, everyone is playing a video game. The father and son having a coffee and a milkshake are too busy playing video games to communicate. The teenager who is struggling in school, instead of considering her studies, is playing a video game because she is addicted to it. What is a video game? This electronic game involves human interaction with a user interface to provide visual feedback on a video device. Are they good for you? Well, maybe there are advantages. But, the disadvantages greatly outnumber the advantages.
Firstly, let’s consider the health repercussions of video games. Sitting in one place, moving your fingers or thumbs around, cannot be good for health. According to research, playing video games increases the risk of various diseases including heart diseases, arthritis, diabetes and many more. In addition, usually when sitting in one place, one tends to munch on snacks, and these are not the healthy ones! Too many calories with too little exercise results in obesity. Obesity can increase your risk of heart attacks and diabetes, high blood pressure etc. So, a healthy life is out of the window and this is the main disadvantage of playing video games.
Secondly, video games are addictive. All you care about is forging ahead to the next level. You sit and play for many hours and forget about everything else. All you care about is overcoming your obstacles in order to get to the next level. So, the moment you come home, you switch on your game and sit and play because you really cannot think of anything else. Your friends call you to go out, your term paper is due in a few weeks and all you that is on your mind is your video game. You are falling behind in your academic studies and you don’t care. This form of addiction is another disadvantage of video games.
Computer vision syndrome is a condition many computer users get by staring at a computer screen the whole day. This is not a specific problem; rather it is a range of eyestrain and pain associated with frequent computer use. This is similar to carpal tunnel syndrome. Continued focus on one thing can strain the eye muscles. It is very different to the focus you give when reading because a computer screen has a glare in the background, the screen flickers from time to time etc. Most often, constant use of computers or video games can cause blurred vision, double vision, headaches and eye irritation all related to computer vision syndrome.
Video games can have many disadvantages for children. For example, according to research, violent games produce aggressive children. Playing video games that have a lot of shooting and killing in them increases children’s anger and brings out aggressive behaviour.
So, does this mean playing video games has to stop? No. It simply means that we must know when to stop and say “that’s it! I’m done for today”. We must be able to get up and walk away, have a good social life and lead a healthy life. These are far more crucial than a game.