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...