Violent Video Games may turn teens into reckless drivers
The researchers conducted a series of four phone interviews with more than 5,000 U.S teens over the course of four years.
"Most parents probably would be disturbed to learn that we observed that this type of game play was more strongly associated with teen drivers being pulled over by the police than their parenting practices," study lead author Jay Hull, a psychology professor at Dartmouth College, said in a journal news release.
"Playing these kinds of video games could also result in these adolescents developing personalities that reflect the risk-taking, rebellious characters they enact in the games and that could have broader consequences that apply to other risky behaviors such as drinking and smoking," Hull added.
The researchers pointed out their findings were limited since the teens' habits were based on their own perceptions of their driving. "At the same time, because the study began when the participants were playing video games but were too young to drive, it is clear that the video-game exposure preceded the risky driving," Hull said.
Although the study found an association between teen video-game playing and driving habits, it did not prove a cause-and-effect relationship.