There was a time where games came on cassettes not disks. When the controllers were connected to the games console and you couldn’t move to far away through fear of losing your connection. Nowadays gaming has vastly been developed and things like online gaming and virtual reality are all normal things now in the gaming world. However, while things have advanced that also means that the myths and concerns regarding it have also advanced and some of them are true and some of them just don’t have any depth to them.
I know what you may be thinking. Children shouldn’t be spending all hours on their games console and while there is some truth to that, it is also worth remembering that games can be great entertainment. With Christmas coming up many parents are bound to see something game related on their child’s Christmas list. But I wanted to share with you some of the myths around gaming and children and hopefully offer some insight and comfort with some of the larger concerns.
Does gaming numb a child’s mind?
There is a huge common myth amongst parents and society today that gaming is going to numb a child’s mind. There really isn’t any factual evidence to support this claim and most likely you will find that some children spend more time gaming, but it certainly won’t mumb their mind. However, too much time on a game can affect concentration levels and also how focused your mind is. So it is worth remembering that it is worthwhile to ensure that you monitor how long a child is spending on their games console. Often, because the console itself is in a bedroom, it can be hard to monitor. But putting effective rules in place and even ensuring that other activities take place such as attending family meals, engaging with friends and siblings away from gaming, or even getting outside and having some fresh air could help you to feel better about the whole gaming thing.
Does gaming make children and teenagers antisocial?
If we are being totally honest with ourselves I am sure we can all agree that a great game can become addictive. Which means that you find it hard to pull away as you get further into the game and up through different levels. If you think about, it is just the same as getting involved in a good book. This is when having gaming time limits could help with this. Antisocial behaviour suggests that children and teenagers nowadays don’t know how to talk, communicate or be with children their own age, because they spend too much time in their bedrooms playing games. But the truth is, if it is monitored correctly, a child can enjoy time on their game and spend time with friends and family encouraging more social activities. Gaming can also be a shared experience amongst friends and family, so why not involve your child’s interest in this activity and show some interest yourself. You may find that it opens up a whole new world to you that you find quite fun and enjoyable.
Does it expose our children to explicit or inappropriate content?
Gaming can and will always be a portal for explicit and inappropriate content, there is no hiding that fact. That is why some games have age limits and warnings on them. But the issue is that some parents won’t know that there children are playing these games, or even think that the ge limits are warnings are just there and that they can be ignored. But, this is a myth that needs to be busted for parents and not for children. It is the responsibility of a parent to ensure that what their child plays with on their games console is appropriate for their viewing and to monitor online and download activity.
It costs way too much money
A big myth when it comes to gaming is the overall cost of games consoles, games, and subscription packages and accessories that come with it. Many parents will agree that once the Christmas list is drawn up that they know that there may be some expensive items on there. However, it doesn’t have to be as expensive as you imagine. People turn to websites like eBay or G2A to determine whether they can get a better deal elsewhere. Perhaps on something pre-owned or discounted in a sale. However, what you might be wondering is G2A legit? Of course, there are always concerns when purchasing online from other selling platforms that aren’t directly from a manufacturer or larger retail outlet. But with some careful research and consideration you can reduce the cost of your child’s gaming hobby.
Do kids prefer to stay indoors now?
Are children less likely to play outside now? Has gaming really taken over everyone’s lives? The truth is this will always be a myth that lingers around the gaming community and for parents it can be a big concern. After all, back in the day children played outside, kicked a ball around or enjoying riding a bike. Do they do that now? Of course they do. Perhaps not as much, but then again the world has changed in recent decades and I am sure many parents will agree that it is always best to keep a close eye on children nowadays. However, gaming can be addictive, so with some provisions in place you can encourage your children to take up other activities and mix things up a little.
You are potentially exposing children to online predators
Finally, no parent actively exposes their children to online predators. But with a big online gaming community and many games allowing play against others then this door has been opened. Most will play with people they know and set up private games for their friends. It is just advisable to mindful of messages and communication and just ensure you are approachable on the matter so a child will confide if they are worried.
I hope this has made you more comfortable with the world of gaming as a parent.