Irfan Tramboo

Now, youngsters get addicted to online game ‘PUBG’

Now, youngsters get addicted to online game ‘PUBG’
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Medicos warn of serious consequences, seek ban on the online game

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Srinagar: Wasif (name changed), a teenager, had parked his car just along the road in Srinagar City, with eyes glued to his mobile screen, the expressions of panic, and at times, the expressions of unknown accomplishment, were visible on his face—easily coming and going. Wasif was playing an online game called PUBG.

He does not know that he has plunged into the addiction sphere of the game which has taken a toll on his mental health, apparently ignored. The doctors are saying that the elements of violence and excitement in the game are having negative impacts on those who spend most of their time playing the online game.

“I spend minimum 8-9 hours playing the game, at times more than that,” he said, while he shrugged when asked if he has become addicted to the game, “I don’t know, I can’t say,” he said.

Those who play the game do not know that they have developed an insatiable urge to keep on playing the game—known as addiction—and there arises no question of seeking any consultation.

Doctors also second the fact that most of the people who are playing the game, do not even think that they have become addicted to it. In a way, the urge has become a ‘disease’ in the name of gaming.

“The fact is that most of the people do not know that they have become addicted to the game which has been internally, unknowingly affecting their behavior,” said Dr Yasir Rather, a Psychiatrist.

He said that the elements of violence in the game are bound to have negative effects, especially on children, and need of the hour is that “to consider spending a large amount of time playing PUBG as a disease, and seek immediate help,” he said.

A mother, whose son is currently studying in class 12th, said, that she has witnessed behavioral changes in her son who is spending large amount of his time playing PUBG.

“I did not know that the game has got anything to do with the addiction, but I kept on telling him not to do so, and spend some less time; he sleeps late in the night, and lately, I have observed some changes in him,” she said.

Dr Yasir also said that he had a patient in his 40’s who earlier was a drug addict and was now addicted to the game, “he was a drug addict and came to me for the treatment. However, in order to keep himself busy, while he was being treated for the drug addiction, he started using PUBG, least did he know that he had become an addict,” he said.

He said that children and those who get addicted to things easily are “prone to it and should seek immediate consolations.”

“Parents should know that playing PUBG has become an addiction, taking a leap towards becoming a disease, if they find so, they should counsel their ward and should apprise them of negative effects of the game. They should seek consultation of a psychiatrist as well,” he said.

The mother of the class 12 student said that her son now gets easily agitated on almost everything, “he has been playing the game for last one year now, but lately, he gets agitated, impatient; even I have seen his performance in studies also have taken a dip,” she said.

Notably, the medico body Doctors’ Association Kashmir (DAK) Friday also appealed parents, teachers, and civil society members to restrain kids from playing Player’s Unknown Battle Ground (PUBG) mobile game.

President DAK and Senior Pediatrician, DrSuhailNaik said that addiction to PUBG is dangerous than drug addiction and students who are playing this game have developed behavioral, sleep and psychiatric disturbances.

“The game can deteriorate academic career of scores of addicted students; the addiction to this game has become more concerning than addiction to drugs,” he said.

“This is a cause of concern as the game is spoiling future of scores of children in Jammu and Kashmir. We get to see youngsters playing the game round the clock and doing nothing else. We request the governor led administration to immediately ban the said game in Jammu and Kashmir,” he said.

DAK said that several cases of PUBG addiction have been reported in J&K, with the most recent dating back to less than a week in Jammu.

Irfan Tramboo

Irfan Tramboo is a reporter and covers education and health and can be contacted [email protected]

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