A study that was presented this week at SLEEP 2009 in
The study involved 137 college students. They had an average age of 22 years; 63 percent were women. Casual game players were compared with excessive game players. “Excessive” was defined as playing more than seven hours per week.
Results show that almost 13 percent of participants reported that they are addicted to gaming. These participants slept one hour less on weekdays than other gamers; they also reported feeling sleepier during the day. In general, excessive gaming was associated with more sleepiness.
But study author Amanda Woolems told the AASM that only some of these college students realized that they were losing sleep.
“Of the people who admitted being addicted to gaming, only about a third of them recognized an interference with their sleep,” she said.
Playing video games also can have an effect on the sleep of children. One study involved children between 6 and 12 years of age in