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Violent Video Games Linked to Childhood Depression

Update Date: Aug 18, 2014 04:39 PM EDT

Besides increasing aggression, violent video games can also increase the risk of depression among adolescents, according a new study.

The latest study, conducted at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston School of Public Health, RAND Corporation (Santa Monica, CA), The University of Alabama at Birmingham, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Atlanta, GA), and Boston Children's Hospital and Harvard Medical School (Boston, MA), revealed that fifth graders who played high-violence video games for two or more hours a day were significantly more likely to report depressive symptoms over a the course of a year compared to those who reported playing low-violence video games for less than 2 hours a day. This association was consistent across all racial/ethnic subgroups and among boys, according to the study results presented in the article "Daily Violent Video Game Playing and Depression in Preadolescent Youth."

"One of the strengths of this study is its large and ethnically diverse sample," Editor-in-Chief Brenda K. Wiederhold, PhD, MBA, BCB, BCN, Interactive Media Institute, San Diego, California and Virtual Reality Medical Institute, Brussels, Belgium, said in a news release.

The findings are published in the journal Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking.

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