If they asked you ... would you know how to detect an addiction to video games in your child? You might answer: sure! If they asked you ... and how ?, surely you would answer ... Well, for the time I dedicate to them! And there is the error. We tend to think that children's addiction to screens is related to the time they spend in front of them, and we forget that we, our generation (now parents), spent hours and hours in front of television (when we still did not have so many screens , of course), and that now as parents we dedicate more than two hours a day to tablet and smartphone.
But then, how do you know if the time my child spends in front of the screens is generating an addiction? In this way: discover the trick to know if your child has a video game or tablet addiction. These are the 8 key questions to know if your child has an addiction to screens.
The trick to know if a child feels too dependent on screens is found in a recent study by La American Psychological Association (Apa-Psycnet) which highlights certain warning signs that parents should be aware of. The important thing is to detect them in time. We will find out by answering these questions (the psychologists who conducted the study asked more than 200 parents):
1. Has your child lost interest in activities other than screens?
2. Do you have problems stopping playing or consulting your mobile?
3. Are you thinking about your favorite activity (video games, tablet ...) all the time?
4. Is it the only thing that puts you in a good mood and irrationally angry when forced to turn off or unplug?
5. Does your use increase over time?
6. Do they sneak or lie to use screens?
7. Does it interfere with family activities?
8. Does it cause problems for other family members?
To all this you must add the time your child spends in front of the screens a week (or a day). It is valid for children between 4 and 11 years old.
To find out what level of dependence your child has on tablets or video games, add the affirmative answers and also assess the time your child spends in front of the screens. From there, reflect on your child's dependence on a tablet, smartphone or video games. If you answer yes to all the questions, it is evident that your child has a clear dependency problem.
However, this same study calls into question the word 'screen addiction'. They assure that it is not clear that this is an addiction, as are many others that generate risks to the physical and psychological health of the person. Alcohol, tobacco, drugs, create addiction, due to certain ingredients that generate in the body an urgent need to consume them again. But ... videogames? The screens? It is not something that is consumed physically. They are not ingredients that come into contact with our brain. It is perhaps an 'emotional' dependence, not a physical one.
Within this study, psychologists quote the word 'addiction'. At other times they prefer to use the term 'problematic use', insofar as this dependence can affect, above all, the child's behavior and his relationship with others.
Whether addiction or problematic use, remember that as of 2018, addiction or dependence on video games is classified as a disease according to the World Health Organization, who has already been in charge of modifying his list of diseases to accommodate this recent problem that can affect a child or adolescent on an emotional, behavioral and psychological level (and even, in more severe cases, physical).
And remember that video games and new technologies are not bad: it is only the incorrect use that is made of them. These questions, by the way, would also apply to parents.
You can read more articles similar to 8 key questions to know if your child has a screen addiction, in the category of Addictions - vices on site.