It is common to see parents warning their kids about the risks of alcohol and drugs. However, there are very few parents who earn their children against “popular online games”. Teenagers often keep details about these games undercover. Generally, parents do not come to know about these games until someone tells them about it or any accident happens.
What are Popular Online Games?
Online gaming defines any video game that supports online interactions with other players. Earlier, video games were classified by an Online Content PEGI description to indicate whether they were present online or not. Now, as most of the games offer online interactions this differentiation term is no longer in use.
What is still different from one game to another is the level of interaction. How much info is shared by the players and how many people do they interact with are the two main factors that parents should be aware of.
Benefits of Popular Online Games for Kids
Popular Online games are vital to understanding as they offer a huge amount of enjoyment, fun, collaboration, team, and imaginative adventure for kids. If played carefully, online games play an essential role in children’s socialization and development.
However, it is significant for parents to understand online games so that they can support healthy and safe habits in children from a young age.
Things you should know about online games
Gaming is a fun and sociable method to spend time, which encourages skill development and teamwork. However, online games have few risks also about which every parent should know.
ü Some games allow children to play and chat with anybody in the world. This means that they might face bullying and some offensive language.
ü Everyone does not disclose their identity while playing online. Kids should never disclose the details that would help the other player identify them or their location.
ü Certain games encourage players to buy additional elements while playing the game- kids have been known to end up spending a huge amount of money.
ü In severe cases, bullying can be used as a trick to win games. Kids may find themselves either getting bullied or bullying others.
ü Get involved by finding out what kind of games your kid enjoys and ensuring they are perfect for their age.
ü It can be difficult to stop certain games in the middle as there may be penalties for quitting and kids may feel that they are letting their friends down.
Addiction of Online Games
Identifying the signs- A lot of things have been heard recently regarding popular online games addiction. Many parents worry that their kids may become addicted to these games.
This is not at all surprising. Just like any other hobby, people who enjoy playing video games for enjoyment will do so with much interest. This can lead to a wish for kids to play for a longer time and quite frequently. Video games are designed to reduce the hurdles to repeat games and increase enjoyment. This convincing approach means it is important for parents to guide kids with screen time restrictions as they create their limits.
Gaming addiction is classified as a disorder- These worries have been increased with the news that the World Health Organization (WHO) adding “games” under the section that deals with “Disorders because of addictive behaviors” which also deals with drugs, gambling, and alcohol. There has been a strong argument among the experts on including video games in the ICD-11 (eleventh revision of the International Classification of Diseases) list.
These standards, when endorsed, focus on identifying causes of behavior in the form of addiction. An average child who plays a lot of games is not addicted. Only when their gaming starts affecting their lives, parents should come into the picture and prevent chaos from happening.
Also, it is vital to understand that the levels of dopamine that popular online games create in children’s brains are one-tenth of those produced by chemical substances that can be addictive. Changing behavior is all about helping kids develop new habits instead of a chemical withdrawal-like for example, substance abuse.
How to support children who are addicted to popular online games
· Parents need to understand how much time their kids play popular online games and what games they are playing.
· Fix a time- When gaming gets excessive, time limits can be a perfect short-term measure to reset the bad habits.
· Ask your kids to take enough breaks.
· Take regular breaks of at least 5 minutes every 45 to 60 minutes as a thumb rule.
· Keep an eye on the games they are playing and for how much time.
· Do not just set time limits. Instead, spend some time with kids and help them enjoy different activities.
To keep your kids safe, parents must be aware of the popular online games that are risky so that they can stop their kids from playing such games.
1. Choking game- This is a deadly game that involves stopping the supply of oxygen to the brain through choking. Some teenagers have done this by using their noses or hands either alone or along with their friends.
2. Fire Fairy- This is one of the popular online games that target young kids. It provides children risky instructions like to switch on the gas at midnight when nobody else is awake at home, and then sleep. The game promises that the players will wake up and then become fire fairies.
3. Cinnamon challenge- It is a dangerous game showed in YouTube videos that have resulted in many hospitalizations and a rise in calls to the US poison centers. In this, the player must swallow a spoonful of cinnamon powder in 60 seconds without mixing water into it. As the spice is acidic, trying to gulp it can cause choking, trouble in breathing, throat irritation, and collapsed lungs.
4. Blue Whale challenge- This is one of the most popular online games that caught everyone’s attention. It is suicide game is an online social media group where the administrators of the group ask kids and teenagers to take on a series of challenges that ultimately kill them.
It is responsible for thousands of teenage suicides across the world, especially in Russia. This suicide game asks players to complete bizarre tasks in not more than 50 days. Makers of this game are designated to exact peer pressure on players, mostly teenagers and kids.
5. Pass Out Challenge- Popularly known as the Choking Game, this game gained popularity among teenagers who intentionally started choking themselves to attain a euphoric high. This game is designed in such a way that children choke themselves to deprive their brains of oxygen so that they experience euphoria. They will stop just at the right point of time and pass out to experience the “high”.
6. Mariam’s Game- This is one of the popular online games that revolve around a child who is lost in the forest and she asks players to help in finding her way home. While this game is filled with scary video and audio sound effects, players are asked a few questions as they accompany the girl back home. This online game was under a lot of controversy on different social media sites. So, if you are finding that your kids are getting addicted to these popular online games, then be careful. Do not allow your kids to play these games and always keep an eye on them.