The Negative Effects of Video Games Interview

An elementary school student named “Zoey” had a number of questions that she asked Dr. Lazarus about video games and their effects on children.
Here are his answers (Audio).

For school, I have a project where I need to research the negative effects of video games. I was wondering if you could answer a few of the questions I have:

 
  • What is the main/most common effect/s of children becoming addicted to video games?

  • How are children’s social lives negatively impacted by video games?

  • What do video games do to negatively affect children’s mental health

  • What do video games do to affect children physically?

  • What is the main problem the children you see have as a result of playing video games?

  • What do you do to help children recover from video game addiction?

  • Do most children who are addicted to video games end up recovering?

  • What is the main negative difference between children who play video games to children who don’t?

  • What do you think a good time limit for playing video games would be?

  • Do the children playing violent video games that you see tend to be more aggressive than the average child?

 

The Importance of Physical Health for your Child’s Wellbeing

If your child sees a therapist in Littleton, you are probably well-versed in coping skills, bedtime routines, rewards, and ways to boost emotions. But how much attention are you paying to the everyday physical health of your child? This blog will focus on the importance of a variety of physical health needs and the ways that they may—or may not—affect mental health.

Sleep

One of the most important questions that child psychologists ask their clients is “does your child sleep well?” If we think of food as fuel for the body, sleep is more like a “reset” for a computer—it gets rid of lags, poor performance, and unexpected errors. When your child has not slept enough, or is not getting good sleep , he is much more likely to struggle to keep up mentally and physically, demonstrate tantrums and bad behavior, and make more mistakes. Even more, sleep is vital for effective learning and consolidation of memories.

Hydration

Dehydration drains your brain—literally! When your child does not drink enough liquids, she is more likely to feel irritable, struggle to concentrate, and become fatigued (and cranky!) much sooner. This is true for adults as well, but children often need reminders to stay hydrated.

Exercise

Some studies have shown that just 20-30 minutes of moderate exercise, 5 days a week, is about as effective as most antidepressants. For children, this can be an important, but easily overlooked way to help manage mood and energy levels. If your child would rather chill with a video game than play a game of soccer, try to encourage a variety of fun physical activities to get blood circulating and energy out. Especially for children with ADHD,  exercise is an important way to promote healthy activity that boosts concentration and focus.

Now that you’re familiar with some of the basics of physical health, how does your child stack up? Don’t stress too much if your child is not catching enough zzz’s, drinking enough water, or working out, just try to move him or her to a healthier place. For help creating structured routines, building strong self-care skills, and promoting the best achievement in your child in Highlands Ranch, contact Dr. Lazarus today!

Truth and Lies in Therapy

Have you ever showed up for therapy session intending to lie to your therapist?  Most people will say that they have not, but studies show that over half the people who visit a psychologist in Littleton actually tell lies to their therapist!  Why does this happen and what is it doing to your therapy sessions? Read on to find out more!

Some Surprising Statistics
Research scientists have found that lots of people actually don’t tell the truth in therapy. Instead, they tell lies, misrepresent the truth, or otherwise avoid talking about what really happens! Most people admit that they have done this at least once, and some admit to doing it multiple times. In individual therapy, this can greatly delay progress; in couples therapy, it can be a disaster.

Why We Lie

People lie for all sorts of reasons—to therapists, to family and friends, and otherwise. Some people tell lies because they are ashamed of the truth, others do so because they wish it were the truth. Lying serves an important role in protecting ourselves from the judgment of others, but most importantly, it serves a role in protecting us from the judgment of ourselves. In married couples, lying can cause major relationship problems , but does not always start off that way—even little white lies can grow out of control.

What it Means

Is it “bad” to lie in therapy? One way to look at it is to consider that, since therapy is about your own self-discovery and change process, lying to your therapist is a lot like lying to yourself. You may be able to pull it off temporarily, but will it really be worth it? You know the “real” truth, so perhaps a better question than judging “right or wrong” is to explore why lies happen, what they are protecting, and how else you can deal with these feelings. If you want to get the most out of your therapy experience , answering these questions—and yes, talking about them with your psychologist—can help!

Everyone wishes they performed to their highest standards at all times… but when reality sinks in, you may find yourself avoiding that truth. Instead, contact a trusted psychologist in Highlands Ranch to explore why you want to present yourself differently and work through these issues for better sessions!