How Much is Too Much? Going Beyond Video Game Consumption When Considering Internet Gaming Disorder

32 Pages Posted: 30 Nov 2023

See all articles by Sezen Cekic

Sezen Cekic

University of Geneva

C. Shawn Green

University of Wisconsin - Madison

Benoit Bediou

University of Geneva

Achab Sophia

University of Geneva

Michael Rich

Harvard University - Harvard Medical School

Daphne Bavelier

University of Geneva - Psychology Department (FPSE)

Abstract

Background:Recognizing the crucial importance of understanding the impact of video games on health in today's gaming-dominated world, our study aimed to investigate the relationship between gaming time and Internet Gaming Disorder (IGD). Despite the widespread assumption that a connection exists both, previous studies have revealed highly variable associations, highlighting significant weaknesses in establishing a robust link. Methods:To unravel this complex relationship, we recruited two independent samples of League of Legends players. We combined the collection of self-reported and actual gameplay data, together with assessments of mental health, personality traits, and cognitive abilities. Results:Surprisingly, none of the gaming variables demonstrated a robust and stable association with IGD, regardless of whether players spent less than or more than 30 hours per week gaming—a threshold suggested by the American Psychiatric Association as a potential indicator of disordered gaming. However, we observed a linear increase in cognitive abilities up to 30-hour, after which cognitive performance plateaued. Notably, mental health factors, such as anxiety, depression and ADHD, emerged as the most influential predictors of IGD. Conclusion:These findings, replicated across two independent samples, challenge the prevailing belief that limiting screen time alone effectively combats IGD. Instead, mental health factors play a crucial role in mitigating risks associated with gaming. Policies focusing solely on restricting screen time are insufficient in reducing the prevalence or symptoms of IGD. Rather, a comprehensive approach that considers mental health and key personality traits must be adopted to safeguard the well-being of individuals engaged in gaming.

Keywords: Internet Gaming Disorder, video games, mental health, Personality, Cognition, public health, screen time

Suggested Citation

Cekic, Sezen and Green, C. Shawn and Bediou, Benoit and Sophia, Achab and Rich, Michael and Bavelier, Daphne, How Much is Too Much? Going Beyond Video Game Consumption When Considering Internet Gaming Disorder. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4646983 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.4646983

Sezen Cekic (Contact Author)

University of Geneva ( email )

102 Bd Carl-Vogt
Genève, CH - 1205
Switzerland

C. Shawn Green

University of Wisconsin - Madison ( email )

Benoit Bediou

University of Geneva ( email )

102 Bd Carl-Vogt
Genève, CH - 1205
Switzerland

Achab Sophia

University of Geneva ( email )

102 Bd Carl-Vogt
Genève, CH - 1205
Switzerland

Michael Rich

Harvard University - Harvard Medical School ( email )

Daphne Bavelier

University of Geneva - Psychology Department (FPSE) ( email )

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