It’s no secret that more teenagers than ever are playing video games online, but for some, this hobby has become extremely problematic.
A new study from Macquarie University has found that up to 3% of teens may have a diagnosable condition known as Internet gaming disorder (IGD).
The IGD has been included in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) since 2013.
The study of around 1,000 teenagers found that around 10% had a “problem” with video games and a further 3% showed signs of IGD.
“Anyone can become addicted to screens, but my research shows that children are more at risk if they have impulse control issues and if their basic needs – self-esteem, inclusion, feeling good about things and having control – are more satisfied online than offline,” said study author, Associate Professor Wayne Warburton.
A new study of 1,000 teenagers found that just under three percent showed signs of internet gaming disorder (IGD). Photo/Fortnite
Earlier this year, the same team published a series of case studies of children aged 11 to 13 who showed excessive use of video games, including Minecraft, Roblox, Fortnite, Call of Duty or Counter Strike: Global Offensive, as well as those fighting against other digital media like social media.
The cases included threats of self-harm and becoming physically violent with parents when their screen of choice was denied.
Young people who have not yet fully developed their willpower and self-control are particularly at risk of falling into harmful behavioral patterns.
“Online interaction does not provide the same level of complex mental stimulation and physical contact as seeing friends in real life,” said Associate Professor Warburton.
“A lot of what we do in games and social media is repetitive and doesn’t use a lot of intelligence.”
He explained that excessive use of video games can cause brain atrophy, which was detectable in brain scans of heavy screen users.
Excessive gaming can also cause brain atrophy, which is detectable in brain scans of heavy screen users.
“The brain is the ultimate use-it-or-lose-it organ. It changes from second to second, and when we work hard, the brain develops new connections to keep up. If not put challenged, he may be losing connections,” he said.
“It would be a concern for people of any age, but it’s particularly concerning for brains that are still developing.”
Warning signs of IGD include teenagers spending more and more time in their bedrooms, lowering their school grades, lying about how much time they play, and giving up hobbies and friendships. they appreciated.
Those affected may become tired and irritable and possibly even become aggressive or violent if someone tries to come between them and the game.
The Macquarie team is calling for volunteers to take part in a trial of a new problem gambling treatment program designed in collaboration with academics from the University of Hamburg.
The survey will take place on the central coast of NSW in mid-October and is free of charge. However, eligible participants must be able to travel to Wyong and commit to 13-16 sessions.
– Duncan Murray, news.com.au