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Video Games Foster Addiction for Kids with ADHD, Autism

Video Games Foster Addiction for Kids with ADHD, Autism

best-games-never-made-6Video games can be a preferred pastime of child and teen boys, but new research suggests those with autism or attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) may be at greater risk for problems from playing the popular devices.

Pediatricians report that kids with autism and ADHD may be more likely to engage in problematic video game habits that may raise their risk for being addicted to the games.

Video games can be a preferred pastime of child and teen boys, but new research suggests those with autism or attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) may be at greater risk for problems from playing the popular devices.

Pediatricians report that kids with autism and ADHD may be more likely to engage in problematic video game habits that may raise their risk for being addicted to the games.

ADHD is the most common mental health disorder for U.S. children, affecting nearly 7 percent of kids between ages 3 and 17, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported in May. Those with the disorder may have trouble paying attention, controlling their impulsive behaviors and may have difficulties at school.

About one in 50 U.S. children have an autism spectrum disorder (ASD), which can range in severity from mild to severe. The disorders may cause intellectual and social impairments, language difficulties and unusual, repetitive behaviors.

“These results suggest that children with ASD and those with ADHD may be at particularly high risk for significant problems related to video game play,” wrote the researchers, led by Dr. Micah O. Mazurek, a psychologist at the University of Missouri in Columbia.

For the study, researchers surveyed parents of 141 boys between the ages of 8 and 18 about their children’s video game usage. They were given questionnaires that looked at how many hours of games they played daily, whether they could access the games in their rooms and any symptoms of problematic gaming. Fifty-six of the children had autism, 44 had ADHD and 41 had typical development.

 READ MORE on CBS

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