Children with autism spectrum disorders and attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) have a higher risk of having a video-game addiction. According to a study published in the journal Pediatrics, children with autism spectrum disorder spend about twice as much time playing video games than children who don’t have a developmental disability.
"What we found is that it looks like (addictive gaming) was largely driven by inattention," Christopher Engelhardt, one of the study's authors from the University of Missouri in Columbia, told Reuters Health.
The study was based on a survey of parents of 141 boys between the ages 8 and 18. Of those, 56 had an autism spectrum disorder, 44 had ADHD and 41 were developing normally. On average, kids with an autism spectrum disorder played 2.1 hours of video games per day. Children with ADHD spent about 1.7 hours per day, and normally developing kids played about 1.2 hours per day. Kids with an autism spectrum disorder or ADHD were also more likely to have a video-game system in their rooms and were more likely to play role-playing games.