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See detailEfficacy of metacognitive therapy in improving mental health: A meta-analysis of single-case studies
Rochat, Lucien; Manolov, Rumen; Billieux, Joël UL

in Journal of Clinical Psychology (in press)

Context. Metacognitive therapy and one of its treatment components, the attention training technique are increasingly being delivered to improve mental health. Objective. To examine the efficacy of ... [more ▼]

Context. Metacognitive therapy and one of its treatment components, the attention training technique are increasingly being delivered to improve mental health. Objective. To examine the efficacy of metacognitive therapy and/or attention training technique on mental health outcomes from single-case studies. Methods. Fourteen studies (53 patients) were included. The d-statistic for multiple baseline data and the percentage change index were used to compute the effect sizes. Results. Metacognitive therapy has a large effect on depression, anxiety, other psychopathological symptoms, and all outcomes together. Effect sizes were significantly moderated by the number of sessions, the severity and duration of symptoms, and patient gender, but not by study quality or attention training technique when used as a stand-alone treatment. At the follow-up, 77.36% of the individuals were considered recovered or had maintained improvement. Conclusion. Metacognitive therapy and attention training technique strongly contribute to improving mental health outcomes. This study effectively informs evidence-based practice in the clinical milieu. [less ▲]

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See detailExploring gambling craving through the elaborated intrusion theory of desire: a mixed methods approach
Cornil, Aurélien; Lopez-Fernandez, Olatz; Devos, Gaëtan et al

in International Gambling Studies (in press)

Gambling disorder is a well-established behavioural addiction, which was classified with substance-related disorders in the fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders ... [more ▼]

Gambling disorder is a well-established behavioural addiction, which was classified with substance-related disorders in the fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. Although craving was introduced as a new diagnostic criterion for substance-related disorders, it was not included for gambling disorder. This study aimed to explore the experience of gambling craving and to evaluate whether the elaborated intrusion theory of desire (EIT), a cognitive model of craving, fits gambling craving. A mixed methods study was conducted among 31 non-clinical gamblers. The qualitative part consisted of open-ended questions targeting the components of the EIT. The quantitative part consisted of a questionnaire designed to assess triggers and descriptions of gambling craving. Qualitative analysis revealed six distinct conceptual categories related to gambling craving: positive and negative affect, external cues, mental imageries, thoughts and physiological sensations. The quantitative analysis highlighted the most relevant triggers (e.g. spontaneous thoughts) and experiential characteristics (e.g. visual imagery) of gambling craving. The present study allowed the authors to support the relevance of the EIT as it applies to gambling craving by disentangling its core features. Findings from this study suggest that the use of interventions derived from the EIT may be relevant for problem gambling treatment. [less ▲]

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See detailFurther exploration of the SUPPS-P Impulsive Behavior Scale’s factor structure: Evidence from a large Hungarian sample
Zsila, Ágnes; Bőthe, Beáta; Demetrovics, Zsolt et al

in Current Psychology (in press)

Background: Impulsivity is a multidimensional construct playing a pervasive role in psychiatry and neuropsychology. Lynam et al. (2006) have developed the 59-item UPPS-P Impulsive Behavior Scale, which ... [more ▼]

Background: Impulsivity is a multidimensional construct playing a pervasive role in psychiatry and neuropsychology. Lynam et al. (2006) have developed the 59-item UPPS-P Impulsive Behavior Scale, which assesses five distinct impulsivity dimensions: positive urgency, negative urgency, lack of perseverance, lack of premeditation, and sensation seeking. The short, 20-item version of the UPPS-P (SUPPS-P; Billieux et al. 2012) has been developed and adapted into several languages, including English, French, Italian, Spanish, and Arabic. The aim of the present study was to test four theoretical models of the SUPPS-P in a large sample of Hungarian adults. Methods: A total of 15,703 participants (64.76% male; Mage = 33.42 years, SD = 11.06) completed the SUPPS-P using an online questionnaire. Results: Confirmatory factor analyses corroborated the first-order five-factor model of impulsivity and a hierarchical model representing three higher-order constructs (urgency, lack of conscientiousness, sensation seeking), whereas the one-factor and three-factor model were not supported. The factor structure of the SUPPS-P preserved the original, theory-driven structure of the UPPS-P model and this instrument demonstrated good internal consistency. Hypersexual behavior consequences were positively associated with most SUPPS-P components, thus criterion validity was also supported. Conclusion: The SUPPS-P had strong psychometric properties that reflected the theoretical structure of the original UPPS-P model, thus it constitutes a theoretically grounded and time saving multidimensional instrument for assessing impulsivity. [less ▲]

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See detailEmotionally laden impulsivity interacts with affect in predicting addictive use of online sexual activity in men
Wéry, Aline; Deleuze, Jory; Canale, Natale et al

in Comprehensive Psychiatry (2018), 80

The interest in studying addictive use of online sexual activities (OSA) has grown sharply over the last decade. Despite the burgeoning number of studies conceptualizing the excessive use of OSA as an ... [more ▼]

The interest in studying addictive use of online sexual activities (OSA) has grown sharply over the last decade. Despite the burgeoning number of studies conceptualizing the excessive use of OSA as an addictive disorder, few have tested its relations to impulsivity, which is known to constitute a hallmark of addictive behaviors. To address this missing gap in the literature, we tested the relationships between addictive OSA use, impulsivity traits, and affect among a convenience sample of men (N = 182; age, M = 29.17), building upon a theoretically driven model that distinguishes the various facets of impulsivity. Results showed that negative urgency (an impulsivity trait reflecting the tendency to act rashly in negative emotional states) and negative affect interact in predicting addictive OSA use. These results highlight the pivotal role played by negative urgency and negative affect in addictive OSA use, supporting the relevance of psychological interventions that focus on improving emotional regulation (e.g., to reduce negative affect and learn healthier coping strategies) to mitigate excessive use of OSA. [less ▲]

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See detailProblematic smartphone use: Investigating contemporary experiences using a convergent design
Kuss, Daria J.; Harkin, Lydia; Kanjo, Eiman et al

in International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (2018), 15

Internet-enabled smartphones are increasingly ubiquitous in the Western world. Research suggests a number of problems can result from mobile phone overuse, including dependence, dangerous and prohibited ... [more ▼]

Internet-enabled smartphones are increasingly ubiquitous in the Western world. Research suggests a number of problems can result from mobile phone overuse, including dependence, dangerous and prohibited use. For over a decade, this has been measured by the Problematic Mobile Phone Use Questionnaire (PMPU-Q). Given the rapid developments in mobile technologies, changes of use patterns and possible problematic and addictive use, the aim of the present study was to investigate and validate an updated contemporary version of the PMPU-Q (PMPU-Q-R). A mixed methods convergent design was employed, including a psychometric survey (N = 512) alongside qualitative focus groups (N = 21), to elicit experiences and perceptions of problematic smartphone use. The results suggest the PMPU-Q-R factor structure can be updated to include smartphone dependence, dangerous driving, and antisocial smartphone use factors. Theories of problematic mobile phone use require consideration of the ubiquity and indispensability of smartphones in the present day and age, particularly regarding use whilst driving and in social interactions [less ▲]

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See detailA multifactorial and integrative approach to impulsivity in neuropsychology: Insights from the UPPS model of impulsivity
Rochat, Lucien; Billieux, Joël UL; Gagnon, Jean et al

in Journal of Clinical and Experimental Neuropsychology (2018), 40(1), 45-61

Risky and excessive behaviors, such as aggressive and compulsive behaviors, are frequently described in patients with brain damage and have dramatic psychosocial consequences. Although there is strong ... [more ▼]

Risky and excessive behaviors, such as aggressive and compulsive behaviors, are frequently described in patients with brain damage and have dramatic psychosocial consequences. Although there is strong evidence that impulsivity constitutes a key factor at play in these behaviors, the literature about impulsivity in neuropsychology is to date scarce. In addition, examining and understanding these problematic behaviors requires the assumption that impulsivity is a multidimensional construct. Consequently, this article aims at shedding light on frequent risky and excessive behaviors in patients with brain damage by focusing on a unified, comprehensive, and well-validated model, namely, the UPPS model of impulsivity (Whiteside & Lynam, 2001). This model considers impulsivity as a multidimensional construct that includes four facets: urgency, (lack of) premeditation, (lack of) perseverance, and sensation seeking. Furthermore, we discuss the psychological mechanisms underlying the dimensions of impulsivity, as well as the laboratory tasks designed to assess each mechanism and their neural bases. We then present a scale specifically designed to assess these four dimensions of impulsivity in patients with brain damage and examine the data regarding this multidimensional approach to impulsivity in neuropsychology. This review supports the need to adopt a multifactorial and integrative approach toward impulsive behaviors, and the model presented provides a valuable rationale to disentangle the nature of brain systems and mechanisms underlying impulsive behaviors in patients with brain damage. It may also foster further relevant research in the field of impulsivity and improve assessment and rehabilitation of impulsive behaviors in clinical settings. [less ▲]

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See detailToward a Qualitative Understanding of Binge-Watching Behaviors: A Focus Group Approach
Flayelle, Maèva UL; Maurage, Pierre; Billieux, Joël UL

in Journal of Behavioral Addictions (2017), 6(4), 457-471

Background and aims: Binge-watching (i.e., seeing multiple episodes of the same TV series in a row) now constitutes a widespread phenomenon. However, little is known about the psychological factors ... [more ▼]

Background and aims: Binge-watching (i.e., seeing multiple episodes of the same TV series in a row) now constitutes a widespread phenomenon. However, little is known about the psychological factors underlying this behavior, as reflected by the paucity of available studies, most merely focusing on its potential harmfulness by applying the classic criteria used for other addictive disorders without exploring the uniqueness of binge-watching. The present study thus aimed to take the opposite approach as a first step toward a genuine understanding of binge-watching behaviors through a qualitative analysis of the phenomenological characteristics of TV series watching. Methods: A focus group of regular TV series viewers (N=7) was established to explore a wide range of aspects related to TV series watching (e.g., motives, viewing practices, related behaviors). Results: A content analysis identified bingewatching features across three dimensions: TV series watching motivations, TV series watching engagement, and structural characteristics of TV shows. Most participants acknowledged that TV series watching can become addictive, but they all agreed having trouble recognizing themselves as truly being an “addict.” Although obvious connections could be established with substance addiction criteria and symptoms, such parallelism appeared to be insufficient, as several distinctive facets emerged (e.g., positive view, transient overinvolvement, context dependency, low everyday life impact). Discussion and conclusions: Research should go beyond the classic biomedical and psychological models of addictive behaviors to account for binge-watching in order to explore its specificities and generate first steps toward an adequate theoretical rationale for these emerging problematic behaviors. [less ▲]

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See detailImpulsivity influences betting under stress in laboratory gambling
Canale, Natale; Rubaltelli, Enrico; Vieno, Alessio et al

in Scientific Reports (2017), 7

Although recent research suggests that acute stress influences subsequent decision-making under ambiguity, less is known about the role of personality variables in this relationship. This study tested ... [more ▼]

Although recent research suggests that acute stress influences subsequent decision-making under ambiguity, less is known about the role of personality variables in this relationship. This study tested whether impulsivity traits and acute stress differentially influence the way in which a prior feedback is incorporated into further decisions involving ambiguity. Sixty college students (50% male; aged 18–25 years) were randomly assigned to a stress versus a non-stress condition before completing a laboratory gambling task. The results revealed that independently of the stress condition, subjects behaved as if the odds of winning increase after a single loss. Additionally, stress effects varied as a function of impulsivity traits. Individuals who lacked perseverance (i.e., had difficulty focusing on a difficult or boring task) gambled more after experiencing a loss in the stress condition than did those in the control condition. The present study supports that impulsivity traits can explain the differential effect of stress on the relationship between prior feedback and choices made under ambiguity [less ▲]

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See detailEstablished risk factors for addiction failto discriminate between healthy gamers and gamers endorsing DSM-5 Internet gaming disorder
Deleuze, Jory; Nuyens, Filip; Rochat, Lucien et al

in Journal of Behavioral Addictions (2017), 6(4), 516-524

Background and aims: The DSM-5 includes criteria for diagnosing Internet gaming disorder (IGD) that are adapted from substance abuse and widely used in research and clinical contexts, although evidence ... [more ▼]

Background and aims: The DSM-5 includes criteria for diagnosing Internet gaming disorder (IGD) that are adapted from substance abuse and widely used in research and clinical contexts, although evidence supporting their validity remains scarce. The present study compared online gamers who do or do not endorse IGD criteria regarding self-control-related abilities (impulsivity, inhibitory control, and decision making), considered the hallmarks of addictive behaviors. Method: A double approach was adopted to distinguish pathological from recreational gamers in a sample of gamers: The first is the classic DSM-5 approach (≥5 criteria required to endorse the IGD diagnosis), and the second consists in using latent class analysis (LCA) for IGD criteria to distinguish gamers’ subgroups. We computed comparisons separately for each approach. Ninety-seven volunteer gamers from the community were recruited. Self-reported questionnaires were used to measure demographic and game-related characteristics, problematic online gaming (with the Problematic Online Gaming Questionnaire), impulsivity (with the UPPS-P Impulsive Behavior Scale), and depression (with the Beck Depression Inventory-II). Experimental tasks were used to measure inhibitory control (Hybrid-Stop Task) and decision-making abilities (Game of Dice Task). Results: Thirty-two participants met IGD criteria (33% of the sample), whereas LCA identified two groups of gamers (pathological [35%] and recreational). Comparisons that used both approaches (DSM-5 and LCA) failed to identify significant differences regarding all constructs except for variables related to actual or problematic gaming behaviors. Discussion: The validity of IGD criteria is questioned, mostly with respect to their relevance in distinguishing high engagement from pathological involvement in video games. [less ▲]

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See detailHow can we conceptualize behavioural addiction without pathologizing common behaviours?
Kardefelt-Winther, Daniel; Heeren, Alexandre; Schimmenti, Adriano et al

in Addiction (2017), 112(10), 1709-1715

Following the recent changes to the diagnostic category for addictive disorders in DSM-5, it is urgent to clarify what constitutes behavioural addiction to have a clear direction for future research and ... [more ▼]

Following the recent changes to the diagnostic category for addictive disorders in DSM-5, it is urgent to clarify what constitutes behavioural addiction to have a clear direction for future research and classification. However, in the years following the release of DSM-5, an expanding body of research has increasingly classified engagement in a wide range of common behaviours and leisure activities as possible behavioural addiction. If this expansion does not end, both the relevance and the credibility of the field of addictive disorders might be questioned, which may prompt a dismissive appraisal of the new DSM-5 subcategory for behavioural addiction. We propose an operational definition of behavioural addiction together with a number of exclusion criteria, to avoid pathologizing common behaviours and provide a common ground for further research. The definition and its exclusion criteria are clarified and justified by illustrating how these address a number of theoretical and methodological shortcomings that result from existing conceptualizations. We invite other researchers to extend our definition under an Open Science Foundation framework. [less ▲]

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See detailThe benefits of using the UPPS model of impulsivity rather than the Big Five when assessing the relationship between personality and problem gambling.
Canale, Natale; Vieno, Alessio; Bowden-Jones, Henrietta et al

in Addiction (2017), 112(2), 372-373

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See detailIs medicine use for nervousness associated with adolescent at-risk or problem gambling ?
Canale, Natale; Vieno, Alessio; Billieux, Joël UL et al

in European Addiction Research (2017), 23(4), 171-176

Objective: To examine the association between adolescent at-risk or problem gambling (ARPG) and medicine used to treat nervousness in a large-scale nationally representative sample of Italian adolescents ... [more ▼]

Objective: To examine the association between adolescent at-risk or problem gambling (ARPG) and medicine used to treat nervousness in a large-scale nationally representative sample of Italian adolescents. Study design: Data from the 2013 to 2014 Health Behaviour in School-aged Children Survey was used for cross-sectional analyses (a sample of 20,791 15-year-old students). Self-administered questionnaires were completed by a representative sample of high-school students. Respondents’ ARPG, use of medicine for nervousness and potential confounding factors were assessed. Multilevel logistic regression analyses were used to test the association between medicine use to treat nervousness and ARPG. Results: The overall prevalence of adolescents reporting medicine use for nervousness in the last month was 6.3%. The odds of ARPG were 3 times higher among adolescents who used medicine for nervousness compared to that among adolescents who did not take such medicine (OR 2.96, 95% CI 2.07–4.25). Importantly, the association between medicine used to treat nervousness and ARPG did not vary significantly when viewed in light of psychological symptoms. Conclusions: Medicine use to treat nervousness is associated with increased risk of gambling-related harm. [less ▲]

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See detailTechnological addictions: Conceptualisation, measurement, etiology and treatment.
Kuss, Daria J.; Billieux, Joël UL

in Addictive behaviors (2017), 64

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See detailElectrophysiological correlates of performance monitoring in binge drinking: impaired error-related but preserved feedback processing
Lannoy, Severine; D'Hondt, Fabien; Dormal, Valérie et al

in Clinical Neurophysiology (2017), 128

Objective: Performance monitoring, which allows efficient behavioral regulation using either internal (error processing) or external (feedback processing) cues, has not yet been explored in binge drinking ... [more ▼]

Objective: Performance monitoring, which allows efficient behavioral regulation using either internal (error processing) or external (feedback processing) cues, has not yet been explored in binge drinking despite its adaptive importance in everyday life, particularly in the regulation of alcohol consumption. Capitalizing on a theoretical model of risky behaviors, the present study aimed at determining the behavioral and electrophysiological correlates of the cognitive (inhibition) and motivational (reward sensitivity) systems during performance monitoring. Methods: Event-related potentials were recorded from 20 binge drinkers and 20 nonbinge drinkers during two experimental tasks, a speeded Go/No-Go Task [investigating internal error processing by Error-Related Negativity (ERN) and error positivity (Pe)] and a Balloon Analogue Risk Task [investigating external feedback processing by Feedback-Related Negativity (FRN) and P3]. Results: While no group differences were observed at the behavioral level, electrophysiological results showed that binge drinkers, despite having intact feedback-related components, presented modified error-monitoring components (i.e. larger ERN amplitude, delayed Pe latency). Conclusions: Internal performance monitoring is impaired in binge drinkers, showing an abnormal automatic processing of response errors (ERN) and a decreased processing of their motivational significance (Pe). Significance: These results suggest that the electrophysiological correlates of inhibitory control allow identifying the specific binge drinking consumption pattern. [less ▲]

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See detailFunctional impairment matters in the screening and diagnosis of gaming disorder
Billieux, Joël UL; King, Daniel Luke; Higuchi, Susumu et al

in Journal of Behavioral Addictions (2017), 6(3), 285-289

This commentary responds to Aarseth et al.’s (in press) criticisms that the ICD-11 Gaming Disorder proposal would result in “moral panics around the harm of video gaming” and “the treatment of abundant ... [more ▼]

This commentary responds to Aarseth et al.’s (in press) criticisms that the ICD-11 Gaming Disorder proposal would result in “moral panics around the harm of video gaming” and “the treatment of abundant false-positive cases.” The ICD-11 Gaming Disorder avoids potential “overpathologizing” with its explicit reference to functional impairment caused by gaming and therefore improves upon a number of flawed previous approaches to identifying cases with suspected gaming-related harms. We contend that moral panics are more likely to occur and be exacerbated by misinformation and lack of understanding, rather than proceed from having a clear diagnostic system [less ▲]

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See detailProblematic cybersex: Conceptualization, assessment, and treatment.
Wery, A.; Billieux, Joël UL

in Addictive Behaviors (2017), 64

Problematic involvement in cybersex is generally considered to be an excessive and uncontrolled use of online sexual activities associated with tangible negative outcomes and functional impairment. To ... [more ▼]

Problematic involvement in cybersex is generally considered to be an excessive and uncontrolled use of online sexual activities associated with tangible negative outcomes and functional impairment. To date, there is no consensus in the literature regarding the conceptualization and labeling of this disorder, or of its diagnosis and assessment (e.g., screening questionnaires and diagnostic criteria). Through a systematic examination of the literature, we emphasize that problematic cybersex is an umbrella construct that regroups various types of distinct dysfunctional online behaviors. Despite a considerable increase in studies on problematic cybersex, no clear diagnostic guidelines exist for clinicians and researchers. Moreover, the factors involved in the development and maintenance of the disorder remain poorly examined, and the evidence regarding valid assessment and treatment are lacking. [less ▲]

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See detailBehavioural Addiction Open Definition 2.0 – Using the open science framework for collaborative and transparent theoretical development
Billieux, Joël UL; Van Rooij, Antonius J; Heeren, Alexandre et al

in Addiction (2017), 112(10), 1723-1724

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See detailProblematic smartphone use and its relation with anxiety and depression: a survey in a large sample of undergraduates
Liu, Yueheng; Long, Jiang; Billieux, Joël UL et al

in Chinese Journal of Psychiatry (2017), 50(4), 270-275

[Objective] To investigate the differences of socio-demographics and smartphone use features among Chinese college students between problematic smartphone user (PSU) and non-PSU, and to clarify the link ... [more ▼]

[Objective] To investigate the differences of socio-demographics and smartphone use features among Chinese college students between problematic smartphone user (PSU) and non-PSU, and to clarify the link between PSU and psychopathological symptoms (anxiety and depression). [Methods] A total of 1 205 undergraduates from 35 classes of 8 universities or colleges, stratified with different school levels, were selected using the cluster random sampling strategy. The Problematic Cellular Phone Use Questionnaire (PCPUQ) was used to identify problematic use of smartphone use, and Zung Self-Rating Anxiety Scale (SAS) and Zung Self-Rating Depression Scale (SDS) were used to measure anxiety and depression symptoms. [Results] The prevalence of PSU among undergraduates was estimated to be 20.6% (207/1 006). There were significant differences between PSU and non-PSU on their major of either science category or humanities category (χ2=11.424 ,P<0.01), grade (χ2=5.868 ,P<0.05), monthly living expense supported by their family (χ2=12.713 ,P<0.01), daily time spent on their smartphones (χ2=20.052, P<0.01), frequency of changing the mobile phones (χ2=14.511 ,P<0.01) and monthly smartphone bill (χ2=13.107, P< 0.01). Furthermore, the self rated anxiety (34.8% (72/207) vs. 14.6% (117/799),χ2=43.704, P<0.01) and depression (36.2%(75/207) vs. 15.4%(123/799), χ2=45.159,P<0.01) were both found more elevated in PSU than non-PSU. [Conclusion] Some common sociodemographic variables and smartphone usage patterns were identified in undergraduates displaying PSU. Moreover, PSU is associated with more elevated anxiety and depression symptoms. Problematic smartphone use and its relation with anxiety and depression: a survey in a large sample of undergraduates (Article in Chinese). Available from: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/318762637_Problematic_smartphone_use_and_its_relation_with_anxiety_and_depression_a_survey_in_a_large_sample_of_undergraduates_Article_in_Chinese [accessed Aug 2, 2017]. [less ▲]

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See detailShoot at First Sight! First Person Shooter Players Display Reduced Reaction Time and Compromised Inhibitory Control in Comparison to Other Video Game Players
Deleuze, Jory; Christiaens, Maxime; Nuyens, Filip et al

in Computers in Human Behavior (2017), 72

Studies have shown that regular video games use might improve cognitive and social skills. In contrast, other studies have documented the negative outcomes of excessive gaming vis-à-vis health and ... [more ▼]

Studies have shown that regular video games use might improve cognitive and social skills. In contrast, other studies have documented the negative outcomes of excessive gaming vis-à-vis health and socioprofessional spheres. Both positive and negative outcomes of video game use were linked to their structural characteristics (i.e., features that make the game appealing or are inducements for all gamers to keep playing regularly). The current study tested whether active video gamers from main genres (massively multiplayer online role-playing games, online first person shooter, multiplayer online battle arena) differed in a laboratory task that measured inhibitory control. Eighty-one gamers performed the Hybrid-Stop Task, assessing restraint (go/no-go trials) and cancellation (stop-signal trials) processes of a prepotent response. They completed additional self-reported questionnaires measuring demographics, problematic video game use, impulsivity traits, and depressive symptoms. Results showed that when confounding variables were controlled for, participants whose favorite game is online first person shooter were characterized by accelerated motor responses yet reduced abilities to cancel a prepotent response. No differences between groups were identified regarding the restraint process. The findings of this pilot study might have clear implications for video gaming research by supporting the critical importance of distinguishing between video game genres when considering their specific potential benefits and detrimental effects [less ▲]

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