The (co-)occurrence of problematic video gaming, substance use, and psychosocial problems in adolescents

Van Rooij, A.J., Kuss, D.J. ORCID: 0000-0001-8917-782X, Griffiths, M.D. ORCID: 0000-0001-8880-6524, Shorter, G.W., Schoenmakers, T.M. and Van de Mheen, D., 2014. The (co-)occurrence of problematic video gaming, substance use, and psychosocial problems in adolescents. Journal of Behavioral Addictions, 3 (3), pp. 157-165. ISSN 2062-5871


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Aims. The current study explored the nature of problematic (addictive) video gaming and the association with game type, psychosocial health, and substance use. Methods. Data were collected using a paper and pencil survey in the classroom setting. Three samples were aggregated to achieve a total sample of 8478 unique adolescents. Scales included measures of game use, game type, the Video game Addiction Test (VAT), depressive mood, negative self-esteem, loneliness, social anxiety, education performance, and use of cannabis, alcohol and nicotine (smoking). Results. Findings confirmed problematic gaming is most common amongst adolescent gamers who play multiplayer online games. Boys (60%) were more likely to play online games than girls (14%) and problematic gamers were more likely to be boys (5%) than girls (1%). High problematic gamers showed higher scores on depressive mood, loneliness, social anxiety, negative self-esteem, and self-reported lower school performance. Nicotine, alcohol, and cannabis using boys were almost twice more likely to report high PVG than non-users. Conclusions. It appears that online gaming in general is not necessarily associated with problems. However, problematic gamers do seem to play online games more often, and a small subgroup of gamers – specifically boys – showed lower psychosocial functioning and lower grades. Moreover, associations with alcohol, nicotine, and cannabis use are found. It would appear that problematic gaming is an undesirable problem for a small subgroup of gamers. The findings encourage further exploration of the role of psychoactive substance use in problematic gaming.

Item Type: Journal article
Publication Title: Journal of Behavioral Addictions
Creators: Van Rooij, A.J., Kuss, D.J., Griffiths, M.D., Shorter, G.W., Schoenmakers, T.M. and Van de Mheen, D.
Publisher: Akadémiai Kiadó
Place of Publication: Budapest, Hungary
Date: 2014
Volume: 3
Number: 3
ISSN: 2062-5871
Divisions: Schools > School of Social Sciences
Record created by: EPrints Services
Date Added: 09 Oct 2015 10:11
Last Modified: 09 Jun 2017 13:21

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