Prevalence of Problematic Video Gaming among Ontario Adolescents

Abstract

Video game playing has become a very popular activity among adolescents. Its impact on the mental health and well-being of players is just beginning to be explored. This paper reports on the prevalence of problematic gaming in a representative sample of 2,832 Ontario students in grades 7 to 12. The survey included questions about the school grade, family and school related problems, frequency of video game playing and video game related problems as measured by the Problem Video Game Playing scale (PVP). Most of the students (85 %) reported playing video games in the past year and 18.3 % reported playing video games daily. Slightly less then 1 in 10 of the students (9.4 %) endorsed 5 or more of the PVP items (males 15.1 %; females 3.1 %). Further research is required to delineate the concept of excessive video game playing, its relation to other addictions, and the impact on adolescents’ psychosocial functioning.

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Acknowledgements

Preparation of this work was funded in part by ongoing support from the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long Term Care. We would like to thank all the schools and students that participated in the study, and the Institute for Social Research at York University for assistance with the survey design and data collection.

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Correspondence to Nigel E. Turner.

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Turner, N.E., Paglia-Boak, A., Ballon, B. et al. Prevalence of Problematic Video Gaming among Ontario Adolescents. Int J Ment Health Addiction 10, 877–889 (2012). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11469-012-9382-5

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Keywords

  • Problem video game playing (PVP) scale
  • Problematic video gaming
  • Prevalence
  • Adolescents
  • Survey