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BizReport : Research archives : April 28, 2009

1 in 10 kids addicted to video games

An Iowa State University professor has found that one in ten gamers aged 8 - 18 are pathologically addicted to video games.

by Helen Leggatt

The results of a survey by psychology professor Douglas A. Gentile of ISU and the National Institute on Media and the Family appear to show that nearly one in ten (8.5%) of young gamers are "pathologically addicted". The resulting report (.pdf) , published in Psychological Science, says this group showed at least 6 of 11 addiction symptoms.

The survey of just under 1,200 gaming children and teens asked about their behavior such as lying to others about the amount of time they spent playing games, a decline in grades and time studying and their emotions when they stop playing.

Results showed the pathological gamers spent 24.6 hours a week playing games. The less frequent gamers played 11.8 hours a week. More of the frequent players had a game system in their bedrooms (64.4% compared to 40.8%).

It was also interesting to note that twice as many kids in the pathological group had been diagnosed with attention deficit or hyperactivity disorders.

"We're certainly not suggesting that all kids who play video games play too much," said David Walsh, president of the National Institute on Media and the Family. "Although it's less than one out of 10 kids, it's still a significant enough number that parents should be paying attention. There are kids whose game play becomes more than an enjoyable pastime."

Tags: addiction, gaming, Iowa State, video games

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  • That's an alarming news but totally not new in our society, we all know that video game is now part of our every life. Would you believe, some of the universities nowadays are including video games in their library? That's right, because they know the good effects of video games on their kids in the long run. And we can't neglect the fact that publishers are producing good games such as FFXI, warcraft, Wii and many more to come.



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