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Is Your Kid Addicted to Video Games?

A new study says pathological gamers are twice as likely to have ADHD. Really?

There was a front page article in yesterday’s Des Moines Register about research on kids and video games that was done right here in Ames, Iowa, at Iowa State University. Here’s a quote:

“Almost one in 10 American children, ages 8 to 18, are addicted to video games the way people are addicted to drugs or gambling, ISU researchers found in the largest study of its kind.

So-called ‘pathological gamers’ were glued to games for 24 hours a week, about twice that of other players. They were more likely to be boys and twice as likely to have doctor-diagnosed attention problems such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.”

Twice as likely to have ADHD. That’s kind of scary, isn’t, ADDitude parents?

Although Natalie loves her Nintendo DS, she doesn’t play it excessively. When it comes to playing video games, Natalie’s ADHD is more of a blessing than a curse. Because of her ADHD, she can’t concentrate on playing video games long enough for playing them to become problematic! She also doesn’t watch TV for any length of time. In fact, she’s unable to watch a movie from start to finish. And this is with medication! I’m pretty confident that limiting screen time of any variety is one ADHD-related parenting challenge I won’t ever have to worry about.

I’m sure the Iowa State University study is quite valid, however, and that not every child with ADHD has an experience like Natalie’s. Let’s do an unscientific poll to find out. Do you think your child with ADHD is a “pathological gamer”? Can we substantiate the study’s findings that boys are more likely than girls to become hooked? I’ll start: one girl with ADHD, no video game problem. Parents?