Online game addiction is no longer just a worry of an American-chubby-child’s mother, but the worry of many parents in Cambodia and other less affluent countries. Recently, more teenage Cambodians were addicted to online games, in order to satisfy their fantasy of being heroes or warriors. Cambodian teens would rather eat less or even skip meals just to save money for the online games. Other than spending money, they also wasted their time. According to Chheng Roth Donior, a Cambodian teen, he normally spends three to five hours a day in internet cafes, even under the threat of his mother.
It might have sounded strange to you, since Cambodia is not a wealthy country and most of the urban teens do not have internet at home, and why would they be addicted to online games? One of the reasons is more and more internet cafes have opened up, and Web access is growing rapidly these years. Another reason would be the teenagers in fact do not know they’re addicted to the online games or its harmful effects. The consequence of online game addiction could be serious, for example, last year in South Korea, a man died after playing online games for five days straight.
For sure, the teenagers would waste all their money and time on those internet cafes. They would have less incentive to work or study since the satisfaction gained from the games is far more than those they could gain in their daily lives. It would also harm the gamers’ health (e. g. with poorer eyesight and less exercise) and would lower their face to face communication skills. Later, they may not be able to distinguish between the reality and the created world.
Teenagers are the future of the country, measures must be taken as soon as possible to curb the addiction. First, promotion from the government is very crucial. The teenagers may not understand the harmful effects of online game addictions, government should advertise the harmful effect and possible consequences through mass media, i. e. TV advertisements, news paper, radio etc. Posters should also posted in school, streets and especially the internet cafes, just like a warning note must also included on the package of cigarettes.
For why the teenagers would addict to online games, is that they could gain a sense of satisfaction by beating down their created enemies. Therefore, the teachers and parents of the teenagers should help them build their confidence, like giving them chances to develop their talents. For example, school can provide more Extra-curriculum activities for them afterschool. They should also help the teenagers to identify their dreams and targets, assuring them that nothing is impossible and encourage them to fight for their dreams through talks and lessons.
Then they would not stick to the computer screens, instead, they would work very hard on their dreams. On their ways towards their goals, parents and teachers should give supports and advice to them. Third, government should set up clinics to help the gamers overcome their internet addictions, just like what China and South Korea did. The clinics should provide counseling and information about online game addiction, this could help those people who had already addicted to online games. Lastly, education is always the last resort of most problems.
Schools and parents have the responsibility in teaching the teens about the harmful effects of online game addiction. They should educate the students or their children starting from their childhood. Schools can hold more talks on the issue in order to make sure that they receive related information. If we do not cope with the problem as soon as possible, the situation would become more complicated and serious. The solutions I suggested above would definitely help dealing with the problem, and I hope the situation would be improved soon.
Courtney from Study Moose
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