Children: Gaming - Question

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 11:06 am on 23rd May 2019.

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Photo of Baroness Blackwood of North Oxford Baroness Blackwood of North Oxford The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Health and Social Care 11:06 am, 23rd May 2019

I thank my noble friend for his question. Hundreds of millions of people globally play videogames, and for the majority it is a positive recreational activity. He is right, however, that there is some evidence of a moderate correlation between gaming and depression and anxiety symptoms in young adults, and evidence that exposure to violent gaming can have an impact on sleep and mood. However, that is dependent on the nature and duration of gaming. We also support the WHO’s classification, which identifies addiction within the classification of diseases. The CMO said in her evidence review, however, that there is insufficient evidence to support a specific evidence-based guideline on screen time. That is why we support more applications to the NIHR for research so that we can have a better understanding of the impact of gaming on young people. We would encourage anyone who is concerned to contact their GP.