Violent and horror videos can have harmful effects on children and could also result in psychiatric problems, said doctors at the Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research.The doctors from the department of psychiatry said they receive at least four patients every month where small children are in a state of shock and have symptoms of fear and anxiety after watching such videos. Dr Adarsh Kohli, a professor of clinical psychology from the department of psychiatry, PGI, told the Chandigarh Newsline: “Videos showing violence and horror are turning out to be harmful for small children. A child actually doesn’t know that the situation is not real. It ends up in the child having dreams and night terrors and also entering in a state of shock because of the situation.”
The doctors attributed the problem to the use of technology by the children. “This is a new trend and I believe it is very wrong. We are getting more cases now because these days there is an excessive use of technology,” said Dr Kohli. Kohli said another reason for this problem was lack of communication between the parents and their wards. “Another reason for such cases is that communication between parents and children is very less nowadays and the parents leave the children at home, handing over gadgets to them,” she said.
Kohli added: “It could also lead to other problems. It include problems like change in behaviour, fearful, anxiety and the children not getting separated from their mother. This situation mostly impact the child in the age group of two-six years.”
The doctors also advised how to prevent this situation and how it is treated. “Parents should discourage their students from watching excessive videos and movies that involve violence. We should encourage the children to play, participate and talk rather than stick to movies and videos,” said Dr Kohli.
“The treatment for such cases is parental counselling and restricting the use of cellphones and Ipads by the children. We usually suggest parents that they spend more time with their children and play with them. The important thing is engaging the children in playing activities.”