KOCHI: While schools in Kerala have strictly banned students from using mobile phones on the campuses, their gaming tendency at home is not under constant scrutiny. “We have parents coming in to inform us about their children’s gaming addiction at home. From a young age, parents give their phones to their kids to engage them.
This is the root cause,” says Sreekumar Kartha, principal of Global Public School in Kochi. Experts say parents yield to threats of children when they are denied access to devices for gaming. “Children addicted to gaming develop many behavioural problems, including aggression and tendency for violence. More dangerous are online games which children play during late hours, leading to loss of sleep. This adversely affects their concentration and interest in studies,” says Dr P N Suresh Kumar, professor of Psychiatry, KMCT Medical College.
Kochi-based psychiatrist C J John says children should be peacefully educated about what is wrong with violent and aggressive video games. “Games are for entertainment. If used appropriately with the proper content, it is a very safe method to spend your pastime,” he says.
Most schools in the state have roped in the counsel of mental health experts to cope with the effects of gaming and to make parents aware of the dangers of excessive gaming. Counselling sessions with psychologists are being conducted regularly. Since Gujarat banned PUBG Mobile in the primary schools, discussions are being held to ban such violent and aggressive games.