Study shows 72 percent of teenagers play video games

Aug 31, 2015, 8:05 AM | Updated: 6:43 pm

A new study from the Pew Research Center indicates 59 percent of girls and 84 percent of boys 13-17 play video games.

“For parents I think that at any time with anything, they should always be looking for moderation,” said Christina Jimenez, licensed associate marriage and family therapist with Doorways in Phoenix.

Anytime a child is engaging in excessive behavior, that’s when we have to look and say, ‘OK, what’s going on here’, she said.

“When someone is overly doing, and they’re doing it to extremes, they’re replacing all those other areas; the family, the friends, education … with video games,” she said.

Video games can be like any other addiction, Jimenez said.

“They’re getting so consumed in it that they are detached from their reality,” she said. “Because of that we’re consequences to their ability to socialize with people. We’re seeing consequences to their emotional needs.”

The reason? They’re teenagers and constantly competing and seeking validation through the video game, Jimenez said.

“And unfortunately sometimes that doesn’t happen [in real life] and that’s actually becoming a reflection of their self-worth.”

In her experience, Jimenez is seeing teenagers not engage in the family and becoming angry if parents set limits around the video games.

“For parents if you’re seeing your child engaging in video games in an extreme manner, that’s where you’re going to set some structure and boundaries around it,” she said.

“You’re are going to get some push back immediately because this is what the child is literally addicted to,” she said, “so we’re going to see some of that push back that we would see in any other forms of addiction.”

Setting time limits is key, according to Jimenez

“Saying ‘you have your homework done first, and then you can engage in your game for an hour,” Jimenez said. “And then we’re moving on to other things and making sure that that teenager is getting out there and socializing.”

For some teens, though, this may not be enough. If the kids are sneaking around to play games, playing hours on end, or in any other extreme manner, she said, then parents need to look to a professional to help manage why.

“What’s the underlying reason why this child is having to engage in the behavior, and helping them to reconnect to who they are, without the video game,” she said.

Jimenez also notes parents should know the ratings on games, talk to their teens about how they feel when they play and maybe even play with them to experience it first-hand.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

(Photo by David Paul Morris/Getty Images)...

Arizona judge rules state’s lawsuit against Google can move forward

A judge has ruled that most of Arizona’s lawsuit accusing Google of deceptive practices can go to trial.
23 hours ago
(Pexels Photo)...

Peoria police looking for suspect in early morning fatal shooting

Peoria police are looking for the suspect in a fatal shooting that occurred early Tuesday morning, authorities said.
23 hours ago
Michael Duran (City of Phoenix Photo)...

Michael Duran to replace retiring Kara Kalkbrenner as chief of Phoenix Fire Department

The city of Phoenix on Tuesday announced Michael Duran will serve as the new fire chief of the Phoenix Fire Department, replacing the retiring Kara Kalkbrenner.
23 hours ago
gary sherrod...
Kevin Stone

Suspect shot by Phoenix police near Arizona Capitol jailed after hospital release

An armed robbery suspect shot by Phoenix police near the Arizona Capitol earlier this month was arrested Tuesday after getting released from the hospital, authorities said.
23 hours ago
(AP File Photo/Mary Altaffer)...
Associated Press

Arizona loosens substitute teacher rules to help alleviate staffing shortage

The Arizona Board of Education loosened substitute teacher rules Monday to help alleviate a pandemic-aggravated staffing shortage.
23 hours ago
(Arizona State University Photo; UArizona Photo)...
Danny Shapiro

ASU, UArizona ranked in top 10 in multiple online bachelor’s programs

Arizona’s two largest public universities are ranked in the top 10 for 2022 by U.S. News and World Report for multiple online bachelor’s programs.
23 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

HVAC upkeep in Arizona saves money, keeps families prepared in the long run

Does your air conditioner make weird noises or a burning smell when it starts? If so, you may be due for an AC unit replacement.
GLENDALE, AZ - DECEMBER 27: Wide receivers John Brown #12 and Larry Fitzgerald #11 of the Arizona C...
Arizona Department of Gaming

The most memorable games in Arizona sports history every fan needs to know

Sports teams in Arizona have seen their fair share of instant classic games, but there's a few that every fan needs to know.

How your family can explore the Musical Instrument Museum

Whether you want to spend a day with family, do crafts with kids at home, or have an adult night out, the Musical Instrument Museum in Phoenix has options. As the world’s only global musical instrument museum, MIM offers interactive and immersive exhibits to foster an appreciation of different cultures and their instruments. “A visit […]
Study shows 72 percent of teenagers play video games