By SHAUN HEASLEYJuly 29, 2013
Boys with autism are spending significantly more time playing video games than their typically developing peers and are at higher risk for gaming to be problematic or addictive, researchers say.
On a daily basis, boys with autism are spending more than two hours playing video games. That’s nearly twice the playing time clocked by their typically developing peers, according to a study published online Monday in the journal Pediatrics.
Researchers surveyed the parents of boys ages 8 to 18 — 56 with autism, 44 with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and 41 with no diagnosis — about their children’s gaming habits.
Problematic or addictive video game use was much more prevalent among those with autism and ADHD, the study found. In boys with autism, this propensity toward problematic play was associated with a preference toward role-playing games.