The difficult therapy to improve dyslexia is another drawback, she said. "It's hard work, and it's not fun."
If video games help kids with dyslexia read more effectively, shouldn't dyslexia cases have fallen drastically in recent decades during the rise of video games? Study co-author Facoetti said the new research can't answer that question because the children tested hadn't played video games before.
Eden, who's familiar with the findings, said: "I don't have a great answer for you, but there are a couple of things: I don't think we have a good sense of whether dyslexia is going up or down because the whole definition is variable. What's interesting here is how it might be that what we think of dyslexia may be changing, not just because of video games but because of technology in general."
What's next? Eden said researchers should focus on trying to understand why video games may improve the symptoms of dyslexia.
While the study showed an association between playing action video games and improved reading scores among kids with dyslexia, it did not prove a cause-and-effect relationship.
The study was released online Feb. 28 in advance of publication in the March 18 print issue of Current Biology.
For more about dyslexia and other learning disorders, visit the U.S. National Library of Medicine.
SOURCES: Andrea Facoetti, Ph.D., assistant professor, Developmental & Cognitive Neuroscience Lab, University of Padua, Italy; Guinevere Eden, D.Phil., professor of pediatrics and director, Center for the Study of Learning, Georgetown University, W
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