A 19-year-old boy named Divakar Mali committed suicide, on Thursday in Pune, the reason behind his suicide would come as a shock to you, the teenager committed suicide as he scored low scores in a popular mobile game. His parents had in the past asked him not to excessively use the mobile phone.
Lonikand police station in Pune has registered a case. A police inspector requesting his anonymity said, “The incidence has happened at Pernephata in Haweli taluka of Pune district. He hanged himself. His parents mentioned that he was not attending college for a few days. Divakar Mali is the name of the boy.”
Experts suggest that such cases of taking an extreme step are a sign that mobile users should be regulated by family and teaching institutions. They also suggest that rampant usage without any thought of its side effects will lead to more such cases of self-harm and there is need to create awareness in society.
Dr Pankaj Borade, Psychiatrist from Mind Matters Clinic in Pune, said, “Gaming is an addiction and it is more than a habit. Gaming addiction is a disorder and a person suffering from it is not able to willingly quit it. These games isolate you socially and then make you addicted to it. One must set a time duration for such games and strictly follow it.”
Video game addiction also known as gaming disorder or internet gaming disorder is generally defined as problematic, compulsive use of video and/or internet games, that results in significant impairment in an individual’s function in various life domains over a prolonged period of time.
In May 2019, ‘gaming disorder’ became one such contemporary health plight to be included in the World Health Organization’s disease classification. Thousands of children are addicted to the Internet or mobile gaming and remained glued to their devices for hours on end.
Dr Ajay Dudhane, chairman of Anandvan de-addiction and rehabilitation Centre, said, “Family schools and colleges should regulate use of mobile phones. Many a time’s children are not aware of the hazards of its usage. Schools and colleges through lectures and reading material should make them aware of their disadvantages. Also, if somebody is getting addicted to it the family members and friends should refer the case to the expert.”
Experts suggest that family and school should regulate its use. There is no drug for it and therefore, if one is addicted to it, then help of counsellors or other therapies should be taken. Experts also underline need to create awareness in society.
Dr Shreekant Pawar, HOD at Maharashtra Institute of Mental Health, Department of Psychiatric Work, Sassoon Campus Pune, said, “Mobile addiction is causing sleeplessness in people. People do not talk with family members and don’t feel like eating because of mobile addiction. In extreme cases they even do self-harm. We give a mobile phone to a baby if she or he is crying. Then when they start attending schools, many schools these days give homework or syllabus on a mobile phone. The purpose of the mobile phone is to communicate. But since childhood, we use it for entertainment purposes.”