Navigation Links
National study finds nearly 1 in 10 youth gamers addicted to video games
Date:4/20/2009

AMES, Iowa -- Parents have been saying for years that their kids are "addicted" to video games, but a new study by an Iowa State University psychology professor is the first to actually report that pathological patterns of video game addiction exist in a national sample of youth, aged 8 to 18.

In a national Harris Poll survey of 1,178 American youths (ages 8-18), ISU Assistant Professor of Psychology Douglas Gentile found nearly one in 10 of the gamers (8.5 percent) to be pathological players according to standards established for pathological gambling -- causing family, social, school or psychological damage because of their video game playing habits.

"Although the general public uses the word 'addiction,' clinicians often report it as pathological use," said Gentile, who is also director of research for the Minneapolis-based National Institute on Media and the Family. "This is the first study to tell us the national prevalence of pathological play among youth gamers, and it is almost 1 in 10."

His paper "Pathological Video Game Use among Youth 8 to 18: A National Study," will be published in the May edition of Psychological Science, the journal of the Association for Psychological Science. The study was posted to the journal's Web site today.

"What we mean by pathological use is that something someone is doing -- in this case, playing video games -- is damaging to their functioning," Gentile said. "It's not simply doing it a lot. It has to harm functioning in multiple ways."

Gentile analyzed data collected in a January 2007 Harris Poll survey. He compared respondents' video game play habits to the symptoms established in The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders for pathological gambling. Gamers were classified as "pathological" if they exhibited at least six of 11 symptoms.

The pathological gamers in the study played video games 24 hours per week, about twice as much as non-pathological gamers. They also were more likely to have video game systems in their bedrooms, reported having more trouble paying attention in school, received poorer grades in school, had more health problems, were more likely to feel "addicted," and even stole to support their habit.

The study also found that pathological gamers were twice as likely to have been diagnosed with attention problems such as Attention Deficit Disorder or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.

Gentile was surprised to find that so many youth exhibit pathological patterns of video game play.

"I started studying video game addition in 1999 largely because I didn't believe in it," said Gentile, who is co-author of the book "Violent Video Game Effects on Children and Adolescents: Theory, Research, and Public Policy" (2007, Oxford University Press). "I assumed that parents called it 'addiction' because they didn't understand why their children spent so much time playing. So I measured the way you measure pathological gambling and the way it harms functioning, and was surprised to find that a substantial number of gamers do rise to that level (of pathological addiction)."

But now that this study provides more scientific evidence that the condition exists, the ISU psychologist emphasizes the need for further research to determine how best to treat it.

"There is still much we do not know," Gentile said. "We don't know who's most at risk, or whether this is part of a pattern of disorders. That's important because many disorders are co-morbid with others. It may be a symptom of depression, for example. And so we would want to understand that pattern of co-morbidity because that would help us know how to treat it."

Gentile is continuing his own research, currently conducting both longitudinal and clinical studies to determine risk factors and symptoms found in pathological youth gamers.


'/>"/>

Contact: Mike Ferlazzo
ferlazzo@iastate.edu
515-294-8986
Iowa State University
Source:Eurekalert  

Related medicine news :

1. International team cracks mammalian gene control code
2. V. Craig Jordan, Internationally Renowned Breast Cancer Scientist, Joins Georgetowns Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center
3. Give an Hour(TM) Honors National Volunteer Week with Call to Service
4. MMR Information Systems, Inc. Announces 250,000 Membership Milestone and Granting of International Patents
5. The Social Security Institute Launches Web Site, Inaugurates Campaign to Prevent Nationalization of Healthcare
6. UNICO National Announces 2009 Award Winners
7. The Makers of BENADRYL(R) and the National Park Foundation Encourage People to Pledge to Spend More Time Enjoying Outdoor Moments
8. First Annual World Meningitis Day Gaining National Support
9. PRA International to Present Key Challenges for Safety Professionals at the World Drug Safety Congress: PRA Experts discussing REMS at Washington DC Conference
10. MEDNAX National Medical Group(TM) Uses Courions Enterprise Suite to Automate Identity and Access Management
11. New National Online Survey Says Bipolar Depressive Symptoms Have Impact on Day-To-Day Tasks as Well as Social Activities(1)
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
National study finds nearly 1 in 10 youth gamers addicted to video games
(Date:7/20/2017)... ... July 19, 2017 , ... A July ... lead to, or worsen, varicose veins in some patients, according to medical experts. ... certain not-so-good practices, like excessive sitting or standing, or regularly nicking yourself while ...
(Date:7/18/2017)... ... July 18, 2017 , ... ClinicalTrials.gov and the New ... Need to Consider?, **An FDAnews Webinar**, Aug. 2, 2017 — 1:30 p.m. – ... Rule for Clinical Trials Registration and Results Information,” is a head-scratcher. After reading ...
(Date:7/18/2017)... , ... July 18, 2017 , ... Heritage Woods of ... 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Aug. 15. , The community, which is located ... those on Medicaid, who need some help to maintain their independence. , The lunch ...
(Date:7/17/2017)... ... July 17, 2017 , ... McGraw Family Pledges $3 Million for New ... Generation of Healthcare Clinicians , NORWALK, Connecticut – July 17, 2017 – The ... investing in community health by pledging up to $3 million in a challenge gift ...
(Date:7/17/2017)... Louis, MO (PRWEB) , ... July 17, 2017 ... ... and higher education recruitment firm, recently completed a nationwide executive search for Springfield ... aggressive timeline, Springfield Clinic named Ray Williams, a skilled healthcare executive with more ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:7/14/2017)... 2017 Endo International plc (NASDAQ: ENDP ) ... 2017.  Members of its senior management team will host a conference ... a.m. ET. The dial-in number to access the ... 509-7598, and the passcode is 45397076. Please dial in 10 minutes ... A replay of the call will be available from ...
(Date:7/13/2017)...  New York City-based market research firm Kalorama Information notes ... of.  From new products to new costs, to the threat ... completed study, Potential Pipeline Disruptors . Among ... 1.  Age-Driven Growth - True Impact Moment Arriving   ... impact the growing population and, to a more extreme extent, ...
(Date:7/11/2017)... N.J. , July 11, 2017  Bayer has awarded ... eight countries as part of its prestigious Bayer Hemophilia Awards ... Hospital of Philadelphia and Uniformed Services ... are among the winners. Grant recipients were announced last ... and Hemostasis (ISTH) 2017 Congress, Berlin, Germany ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: