Games Come With A Pause Button, So Should Your Screen Time


We’ve all had a game we loved to play – tag, Monopoly, Scrabble, just to name a few. Nowadays, games come in the palm of our hand and as fun as they are, they can be so difficult to break out of.

Shoot, score, level up, repeat.

That’s probably the mantra of every single person who has ever played a level-crunching game. We all know how fun games can be, especially so if you’re able to play them with your friends online. You get to compete, beat high scores, score new bonuses for your characters, the whole shebang. Not to mention the amazing digital graphics games offer players nowadays. It’s a wonderful world, really.

In the third book of The Plano Adventures series, The Never Ending Game, Zed gets consumed by his game and turns into a gaming addict! His twin brother, Zee, who ironically is the brother who spends more time on his Bottle-Bottle screen, panics and tries to coax him to put down his device. Zed snaps at Zee and in a strange turn of events, Zed disappears into the game itself! Professor Plano and Zee have no choice but to deep dive into the game to save Zed from the clutches of his game.

While we may not literally disappear into an actual game, metaphorically however, there are gamers who lose themselves in their games. According to Business Insider Singapore, Singaporeans spend 7.44 hours each week playing video games. What’s more shocking is that 51% of Singaporeans sacrificed sleep, over 38% skipped meals, and even 31% missed a shower just to play games. 37% even chose to play games over socialising with their loved ones. Sometimes we get sucked into our games so much so that it consumes a person’s life to the point where everything else blurs into the background. This is when the games stop being fun and start to morph into something more sinister: gaming addiction.

Handling your gaming habits.

Gaming addiction is a serious health issue that has even been classified as a mental disorder by the World Health Organisation (WHO). As our children begin to adopt devices in this digital age, it’s important that we parents help them to manage their device use and set healthy limits on the time they spend on their games. This study found that parents should limit gaming and all other device use to 1 hour a day for children in order to prevent gaming addiction, relieve strain and stress around the eyes, and safeguard their mental health.

You could also remind your little one to practice the Clear Vision Recipe every day! The recipe is a good reminder for your child to take a break from his/her screens every half an hour for at least 2 minutes, and to place their devices at least 30cm away from the eyes. After playing a phone game for a maximum of one hour, be sure to bring your child outdoors for some fun in the sun for at least 2 hours a day. Remember, it’s also up to your little one to enact these healthy habits every day because it’s within their power.

If you would like to purchase The Never Ending Game or any of the other 4 books in The Plano Adventures book series, you may find them in Singapore at Kinokuniya, Times Bookstores, and at Popular. Alternatively, buy them online on Amazon or Book Depository

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