The Contribution of Video Technology to Adolescent Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.
The most debated issue in relation to children's attention spans is the negative impact video technology can have. In particular video games, which are a fairly new area of media to consider, and are pervasive throughout our society with usage as high as 160 million users. There is no doubt they are a powerful source of entertainment for children in today's society. In recent years researchers have expressed concerned about the number of attention deficit disorder cases identified in adolescents and its relationship to video technology. While most agree that more research needs to be performed, others disagree and point to the benefits that video games have shown in improving education. Even though research has found that playing video games can lead to improvements in education, video games contribute to attention problems because adolescents who spend more time playing video games display more symptoms of ADHD and research and case studies prove this.
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), which is classified as a psychiatric disorder affects many adolescents. There has been a lot of research on the relationship between television and the possible harm it may have on children's ability to maintain focus. While most of the television programs are produced purely for entertainment, the violence that is portrayed is the primary message of most programs. This same concept also applies to video games, were the theme of most games involves, shooting, killing and annihilation. It would be safe to say that most of the content in video games has no educational benefit. The Swing et al, (2010) study found the following:
Most research on media and attention has looked exclusively at television, yet there are conceptual reasons to suspect that video games could show a similar pattern. Many video games seem to share many features (eg, high excitement, rapid changes in focus) that have been identified as potentially relevant to the television association with attention problems, making a similar association between video game playing and attention problems plausible. (p. 215)
It is also suggested that children that children who are diagnosed with ADHD are more likely to enjoy playing video games due to the stimulation they receive. The ability for them to stay focus on a screen and not on anything else is a very characteristic symptom of AHDH. It makes sense then that children who are diagnosed with attention problems are more likely to find it compelling than the average child. Recent studies have used various factors to include television, video games, and computer usage while analyzing the relationship to ADHD. Lingineni, R., Biswas, S., Ahmad, N., Jackson, B., Bae, S., & Singh, K.(2012) found that by using these factors "Approximately 10% of the sample was classified as having ADHD" (p. 1). It is therefore conceivable to ...