Video Gaming Addiction: Study of School Aged Children Released

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the_real_me's picture
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Video Gaming Addiction: Study of School Aged Children Released
from: Video Gaming Addiction: Study of School Aged Children Released

Video Gaming is a pastime for children in many countries and parents worry about how much time their child games. A new study looks at gaming addiction.

A study released Monday Jan. 17, 2011 in the medical journal Pediatrics looks at addiction to video games in kids, specifically elementary and middle school children. Among the conclusions: the greater the frequency of gaming the greater the possibility of reduced social skills, poor school performance and depression.

The study claims to have found that some kids have traits that may point them in the direction of becoming a compulsive gamer. "Greater amounts of gaming, lower social competence, and greater impulsivity seemed to act as risk factors for becoming pathological gamers," the study notes. "Whereas depression, anxiety, social phobias, and lower school performance seemed to act as outcomes of pathological gaming."

The Entertainment Software Assn., a group that represents companies that make video games, says that the study has faults and does not accept it's findings.

Two Year Study on Video Gaming and Youth

The study, titled Pathological Video Game Use Among Youths: A Two-Year Longitudinal Study, was conducted by a combined research group from America, Hong Kong and Singapore and the group of children used were school children from Singapore. Data from over 3,000 elementary and middle-age children over a 2 year-period in Singapore was used.

Their are now hundreds of games on the market and parents are concerned about their child's time spent playing them. However the research shows that a large majority of children who play games do not become addicted. It is, researchers say, not uncommon for parents to think their child is addicted when he or she is not. The study said that 9 percent of children who play video games are what they call "hard-core gamers."

Study authors say these numbers are consistent in other countries and that for the children in the 'hard-core gamers category, their video gaming affects their schooling and their relationship with parents. Many become increasingly interested in games with violence.

Excessive Video Gaming Takes Away Social Skills

With regards social skills being lost to gaming, research suggest the amount of time spent gaming robs children of time they might otherwise be spending with other children or adults, socializing and partaking in more varied activities. When sitting in front of a video game goes on for years opportunity for social interaction is lost. For 'hard core gamers' if no strategy is found to lessen their time gaming then it can go on for extended time periods and affect their lives as adults.

"This study adds important information to the discussion about whether video game "addiction" is similar to other addictive behaviors," the study concludes. "Demonstrating that it can last for years and is not solely a symptom of comorbid (other) disorders."

The question is....will you be able/courageous/adult enough to sacrifice that which merely pleases you...for that which will truly fulfill you? That is the question of personal growth.
~~~wow-free since 8/22/09

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No one directly affiliated

No one directly affiliated with the administration of this site is typically allowed to modify a wikipedia entry about this site.

But this article is just the sort of thing that someone more distant might want to add as a reference or even a short addition to the stub.

Or not.

Leveling in Real Life

Solei's picture
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Wonderful article, thanks

Wonderful article, thanks for sharing!

I am extremely adamant when it's the Friday before a long weekend of a vacation that I do not want my 3rd graders to spend the whole time off infront of the PC, PS3, Wii, XBox 360, whatever.

During "free time," which is not too often lol -- children take turns rotating through the 3 PCs in our classroom. I allow them to play educational games such as ones found on funbrain, the math curriculum website, spelling city, etc. Some of them try to open up and hide a tab for Webkinz, Lego Land, and other stuff... I'm pretty keen on what they're looking at so that doesn't last too long!

-6 Years Free of Online Gaming-

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well thanks for the insight

well thanks for the insight into the "normal kids", i typically only know from my own ex. meaning from that of a gaming addict

leveling in steps, serenity, sponcys, sponsors, exercise, and sleep, (sanity has been downsized) sober from all electronic games since 11/19/2010

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Thanks for sharing this

Thanks for sharing this article. I don't think we have to be too smart to see that online types of addiction are going to be huge in the next few decades. It may just be the drugs of the 21st century.

My 7-year-old likes to play games on a website that is clearly designed to pull kids in. It's scary to watch her get into the gaming zone within seconds. The house could burn down around her and she may not even notice.

Sounds familiar...

"You don't have a have a solution you don't like!" ~Anonymous

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Clay, this is why I have

Clay, this is why I have become something of an "evangelist" about gaming addiction amongst my friends and other people I meet. There is nothing like one parent sharing with another parent about the grief and pain caused to a child and a family by gaming addiction. At first, sometimes I see people sort of giving a "silent smirk," like something like this would never EVER happen to them, but it doesn't take long before they're telling you about their nephew who dropped out of college, or their neighbor who's a dead-looking "gamer," and maybe even their own secret concerns for a child who seems a little too enthusiastic about gaming.

People should absolutely do what they're comfortable doing, and of course if you would be embarrassed or don't want to share with a certain person... don't. But I really do think the best way for us to bring our message forward is person, by person, by person.

Jane in CT

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Jane...I totally agree.

Jane...I totally agree.

"You don't have a have a solution you don't like!" ~Anonymous

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Hey Xandtar. Looks like someone updated the wiki.

"You don't have a have a solution you don't like!" ~Anonymous

Gamersmom's picture
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Looks like Clark Howard is

Looks like Clark Howard is helping to spread the word. He does these little one-minute video tips on the Headline News Channel on weekends:

"Small service is true service while it lasts.  Of humblest friends, bright creature! scorn not one

The daisy, by the shadow that it casts,

Protects the lingering dewdrop from the sun." -------William Wordsworth

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Well, let's hope that this

Well, let's hope that this information gets into the general public's eyes and ears- I especially like the video posted by Gamersmom. I don't know who Clark Howard is, but I think his concern is clearly sincere and very serious. The connection to childhood and youth depression is terrible and I wonder how it happens...maybe because playing a video game is about as far as you can get from life-affirming activity?

We have heard "increases eye and hand coordination" so much, but how beneficial is that when a possible downside of excessive video game playing is that it can pull kids who become addicted into feeling real depression and into displaying "addiction behavior that is like that of an addicted gambler."

Parents beware. Children and young adults beware. Excessive video game playing is, as they say, a slippery slope. And like most addictions, the addict is the last one to know that they have a problem.


"A person starts to live when he can live outside himself." Albert Einstein

"You don't get to choose how you are going to die. Or when.
You can only decide how you are going to live. Now." Joan Baez

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Anyone who reads the

Anyone who reads the hundreds of posts by parents on this site can confirm what this article says. We don't need a study to convince us, but know that other people do, especially the myriad of uninformed therapists and unbelieving parents of young children.

The OLGA moms have lived through the pain of seeing our children change from young, brilliant, vibrant, talented children to young adult gaming junkies. The good news is, we've seen many of them turn their lives around by managing media in the home or refusing to enable. I've seen many of these traits dissipate as my son has made better choices. There is hope and possibility.

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Yes, studies only confirm

Yes, studies only confirm what we already know! :)

Andrew Doan MD PhD

My Videos: Internet gaming disorder is real & my story 

*The views expressed are of the author's and do not necessarily reflect the official policy of the U.S. Navy or Department of Defense.

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