Studies show that the content we watch on television, computer or mobile phone leave a deep impact on our minds. The influence is significantly stronger in children and adolescents. The kind of content we watch and the time spent on screens decide in what manner it’s going to affect us. I’m particularly worried about the increased violence in movies, cartoons and video games. Children as young as 3 years can access the Internet. They are exposed to content not suitable for young minds. Children can’t distinguish between the real-life and the screen experience. The violence they watch in video games or the movies increases aggressive behaviour, angry feelings and decreases empathy drastically.
What Harm can TV, Movies and Video Games do to Children and adolescents
* Researchers say that 37% of media aimed at children have scenes of physical or verbal violence. What’s more, 90% of movies, 68% of video games, 60% of TV shows, and 15% of music videos have some form of violence.
* It is around 3-4 years of age that children begin to develop perceptions and expectations about the world around them. The screen violence may harm their mental health by making them believe that the world is a more dangerous place than it actually is.
* There are many prominent risk factors related to watching violence on screen. Some are short-term risks like trying to hit siblings, friends or other family members, scary nightmares or other forms of antisocial behaviour. Long-term risks include being less sensitive to the sufferings of others, criminal tendencies and negative thoughts.
* Exposing too early to violence can ruin a person’s life completely. Children show signs of inattentiveness and emotional disturbance. It is scientifically proven that early exposure to violence makes children more anti-social. They lie unabashedly, don’t feel the pain of others and manipulate things.
Can We Avoid Screen Violence?
* I know there are many votes in the favour of video games; they increase eye-hand coordination, sharpen minds, gives the child the courage to face the contemporary world. I agree to some extent but not at the cost of assembling the generation of anti-socials whose tendency is to break the rules.
* There’s a suggestion for parents. When the child is young, you have the power to mould the direction of his life. Give him better options to enjoy childhood. Some good alternatives are to play outdoors, make real friends or interact with relatives. Believe me, old values still exist and are helping rear better lives.