Are children who play violent video games at greater risk for depression?

August 18, 2014
Credit: Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers

While much attention has focused on the link between violent video game playing and aggression among youths, a new study finds significantly increased signs of depression among preteens with high daily exposure to violent video games. The details and implications of this important new study are described in Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking.

Susan R. Tortolero, PhD and coauthors from The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston School of Public Health, RAND Corporation (Santa Monica, CA), The University of Alabama at Birmingham, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Atlanta, GA), and Boston Children's Hospital and Harvard Medical School (Boston, MA) recorded significantly more depressive symptoms over the course of a year among fifth-graders from three U.S. cities who reported playing high-violence video games for 2 or more hours a day, compared to those who reported playing low-violence video games for less than 2 hours a day. This association was consistent across all racial/ethnic subgroups and among boys, according to the study results presented in the article "Daily Violent Video Game Playing and Depression in Preadolescent Youth."

"One of the strengths of this study is its large and ethnically diverse sample," says Editor-in-Chief Brenda K. Wiederhold, PhD, MBA, BCB, BCN, Interactive Media Institute, San Diego, California and Virtual Reality Medical Institute, Brussels, Belgium.

Explore further: Video games do not make vulnerable teens more violent, study says

More information: The article is available free on the Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking website.

Related Stories

Video games do not make vulnerable teens more violent, study says

August 26, 2013
Do violent video games such as 'Mortal Kombat,' 'Halo' and 'Grand Theft Auto' trigger teenagers with symptoms of depression or attention deficit disorder to become aggressive bullies or delinquents? No, according to Christopher ...

Violent video games delay the development of moral judgement in teens

February 5, 2014
Mirjana Bajovic of Brock University set out to discover whether there was a link between the types of video games teens played, how long they played them, and the teens' levels of moral reasoning: their ability to take ...

Violent video games have lower effects on highly-exposed teens

May 3, 2013
Teenagers who are highly exposed to violent video games—three or more hours per day—show blunted physical and psychological responses to playing a violent game, reports a study in the May issue of Psychosomatic Medicine: ...

Video-game playing for less than an hour a day is linked with better-adjusted children

August 4, 2014
A new study suggests video game-playing for less than an hour a day is linked with better-adjusted children and teenagers. The research, carried out by Oxford University, found that young people who indulged in a little video ...

Video games linked to aggressive behavior in kids

March 24, 2014
Youths who play video games are more likely to think and act in aggressive ways, suggested a study out Monday of more than 3,000 schoolchildren in Singapore.

Recommended for you

Many kinds of happiness promote better health, study finds

July 21, 2017
A new study links the capacity to feel a variety of upbeat emotions to better health.

Study examines effects of stopping psychiatric medication

July 20, 2017
Despite numerous obstacles and severe withdrawal effects, long-term users of psychiatric drugs can stop taking them if they choose, and mental health care professionals could be more helpful to such individuals, according ...

Study finds gene variant increases risk for depression

July 20, 2017
A University of Central Florida study has found that a gene variant, thought to be carried by nearly 25 percent of the population, increases the odds of developing depression.

In making decisions, are you an ant or a grasshopper?

July 20, 2017
In one of Aesop's famous fables, we are introduced to the grasshopper and the ant, whose decisions about how to spend their time affect their lives and future. The jovial grasshopper has a blast all summer singing and playing, ...

Perceiving oneself as less physically active than peers is linked to a shorter lifespan

July 20, 2017
Would you say that you are physically more active, less active, or about equally active as other people your age?

Old antibiotic could form new depression treatment

July 19, 2017
An antibiotic used mostly to treat acne has been found to improve the quality of life for people with major depression, in a world-first clinical trial conducted at Deakin University.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.