1 in 10 US Youth Addicted to Video Games

Addicted video gamer
A new study conducted by the Iowa State University and the National Institute on Media and Family found that 1 in 10 American children are addicted to video games.

For a lot of kids, playing video games is just something that they really enjoy doing, but for one out of 10 kids, it is a serious problem. They are so addicted that they neglects daily chores or homework to play games.

The study, led by Dr Douglas Gentile, a psychology professor at Iowa State University, was published in the journal Psychological Science and used data from a Harris Poll of nearly 1,200 children ages 8 to 18 from across the US. The study found that 88 per cent of US kids played video games at least occasionally, and on average children play about 13 hours of video games a week.

The researchers classified gamers as "pathological" if they exhibited at least six of 11 symptoms of addiction. 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 addicted gamers were twice as likely to have been diagnosed with attention problems such as Attention Deficit Disorder or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.