ED­I­TOR LIZ KEAR­NEY

Irish Independent - Health & Living - - UPDATE -

Hi,

‘Gam­ing ad­dic­tion’ is a hot topic at the mo­ment, as par­ents all over the coun­try say “I told you so!” when they read that the play­ing of com­puter games, when it reaches a cer­tain level of sever­ity, had been clas­si­fied as a dis­or­der. With the push on to limit screen time for chil­dren and young adults, sit­ting in a room star­ing at a com­puter game for hours on end is al­ready uni­ver­sally per­ceived to be a bad thing.

And yet. In her col­umn this week, psy­chi­a­trist Pa­tri­cia Casey of­fers pause for thought. What if, she writes, com­pul­sive play­ing of com­puter games is not a psy­chi­atric dis­or­der, but just a re­ally bad habit?

She ques­tions whether clas­si­fy­ing such a habit — no mat­ter how se­vere — as a dis­or­der, will only drive par­ents to seek treatment for their chil­dren, whom they be­lieve are play­ing too many com­puter games, rather than look­ing to ed­u­cate them­selves about the topic, and about their par­ent­ing tech­niques.

How happy are you out of your com­fort zone? On p6, Katie Byrne talks to the blind peo­ple who have taken up danc­ing. Through the dance classes, they en­joy the free­dom of move­ment without fear, and their see­ing part­ners are given a chance to con­nect with the sen­sory world around them, with star­tling re­sults.

On p12, sur­vivors of child­hood can­cer talk about the knock-on ef­fects of their treatment in their adult lives, and in­som­nia suf­ferer and au­thor Roisin Meaney finds an un­con­ven­tional treatment for her sleep­less­ness, on p9.

Un­til next week,

Liz

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