IVO Addiction Research Institute

Rotterdam, Netherlands

IVO Addiction Research Institute

Rotterdam, Netherlands

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Hellman M.,University of Helsinki | Schoenmakers T.M.,IVO Addiction Research Institute | Schoenmakers T.M.,Erasmus Medical Center | Nordstrom B.R.,University of Pennsylvania | Van Holst R.J.,University of Amsterdam
Addiction Research and Theory | Year: 2013

Drawing on explanatory pluralism this cross-disciplinary theoretical study asks whether excessive compulsive online gaming can be called an addiction on the basis of what is known about the disorder. This article discusses the concept of addiction; the social seating of the problems and it reviews, recent scientific literature on criteria used for diagnosing addictions. In addition, contributions by brain science are discussed. The study unfolds different dimensions of the problem and concludes by stating that research indicate that there indeed seems to be a type of problematic online gaming behavior, which bears similarities to such an extent with the essence of the concept and the phenomenon of addiction that it can beneficially lend itself and be compared to it. The authors suggest that this behavioral addiction may differ from drug addictions in magnitude, but not in kind. In addition, the authors find a possible solution for conceptualizing behavioral addictions by a general de-medicalization of the concept of addiction. Copyright © 2013 Informa UK Ltd.


Van Rooij A.J.,IVO Addiction Research Institute | Prause N.,University of California at Los Angeles
Journal of Behavioral Addictions | Year: 2014

Aims: In the last 5 years a deluge of articles on the topic of Internet addiction (IA) has proposed many candidate symptoms as evidence of this proposed disease. We critically reviewed the current approach to the measurement and identification of this new excessive behavior syndrome. Methods: Three popular models of IA were discussed: Griffith's components model; Young's Internet Addiction Test (IAT); and the criteria by Tao et al. (2010). We selected these models because they are widely cited and propose specific criteria for IA disorder. Our approach is not meant to provide an exhaustive review, but to discuss and critique the most salient trends in the field. Results: The models of Internet addiction share some criteria, including feeling a loss of control over Internet use; ensuing psychological, social, or professional conflict or problems; and preoccupation when not using the Internet. Other criteria inconsistently mentioned include: mood management, tolerance, withdrawal, and craving/anticipation. The models studied here share the assumption that the Internet can produce a qualitative shift to a diseased state in humans. Conclusions: We critically discussed the above criteria and concluded that the evidence base is currently not strong enough to provide support for an Internet addiction disorder. Future research areas are suggested: (1) Focusing on common impaired dimensions, (2) exploring neuroimaging as a model building tool, and (3) identifying shifts in the rewarding aspects of Internet use. Given the lack of consensus on the subject of Internet addiction, a focus on problem behaviors appears warranted. © 2014 Akadémiai Kiadó.


Rodenburg G.,IVO Addiction Research Institute | Rodenburg G.,Erasmus Medical Center | Oenema A.,Maastricht University | Kremers S.P.J.,Maastricht University | And 3 more authors.
International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity | Year: 2013

Background: Various diet- and activity-related parenting practices are positive determinants of child dietary and activity behaviour, including home availability, parental modelling and parental policies. There is evidence that parenting practices cluster within the dietary domain and within the activity domain. This study explores whether diet- and activity-related parenting practices cluster across the dietary and activity domain. Also examined is whether the clusters are related to child and parental background characteristics. Finally, to indicate the relevance of the clusters in influencing child dietary and activity behaviour, we examined whether clusters of parenting practices are related to these behaviours. Methods: Data were used from 1480 parent-child dyads participating in the Dutch IVO Nutrition and Physical Activity Child cohorT (INPACT). Parents of children aged 8-11 years completed questionnaires at home assessing their diet- and activity-related parenting practices, child and parental background characteristics, and child dietary and activity behaviours. Principal component analysis (PCA) was used to identify clusters of parenting practices. Backward regression analysis was used to examine the relationship between child and parental background characteristics with cluster scores, and partial correlations to examine associations between cluster scores and child dietary and activity behaviours. Results: PCA revealed five clusters of parenting practices: 1) high visibility and accessibility of screens and unhealthy food, 2) diet- and activity-related rules, 3) low availability of unhealthy food, 4) diet- and activity-related positive modelling, and 5) positive modelling on sports and fruit. Low parental education was associated with unhealthy cluster 1, while high(er) education was associated with healthy clusters 2, 3 and 5. Separate clusters were related to both child dietary and activity behaviour in the hypothesized directions: healthy clusters were positively related to obesity-reducing behaviours and negatively to obesity-inducing behaviours. Conclusion: Parenting practices cluster across the dietary and activity domain. Parental education can be seen as an indicator of a broader parental context in which clusters of parenting practices operate. Separate clusters are related to both child dietary and activity behaviour. Interventions that focus on clusters of parenting practices to assist parents (especially low-educated parents) in changing their child's dietary and activity behaviour seems justified. © 2013 Rodenburg et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.


Rodenburg G.,IVO Addiction Research Institute | Rodenburg G.,Erasmus Medical Center | Kremers S.P.J.,Maastricht University | Oenema A.,Maastricht University | And 2 more authors.
Public Health Nutrition | Year: 2014

Objective To examine cross-sectional and longitudinal (one-year follow-up) associations of parental feeding styles with child snacking behaviour and weight in the context of general parenting, taking into account the multidimensionality of the controlling feeding style. Design Linear regression analyses were performed. Parents completed a questionnaire to measure five feeding style dimensions (Instrumental Feeding, Emotional Feeding, Encouragement, Overt Control and Covert Control) and children's fruit, energy-dense snack and sugar-sweetened beverage (SSB) intakes. Children's height and weight were measured to calculate their BMI Z-scores. Moderation by parenting style was tested by adding interaction terms to the regression analyses. Setting Observational study in the Netherlands. Subjects Parent-child dyads (n 1275) participating in the INPACT (IVO Nutrition and Physical Activity Child cohorT) study; children were (on average) 9 years of age. Results Instrumental Feeding and Emotional Feeding were negatively related to child fruit intake one year later and positively to (changes in) child energy-dense snack intake. Encouragement was negatively related to child energy-dense snacking and SSB intake one year later. Overt Control was cross-sectionally and prospectively related to (changes in) child energy-dense snacking and SSB intake in a negative direction. Covert Control showed similar associations with child energy-dense snacking and SSB intake as Overt Control. Although Covert Control was also positively related to child fruit intake and (changes in) child BMI Z-score, bootstrapping analyses revealed only a differential effect of Overt Control and Covert Control on child BMI Z-score one year later, with Covert Control displaying a stronger, positive association. Moderation analyses showed that some significant associations between parental feeding styles and outcome measures were dependent on the degree of psychological control and behavioural control. Conclusions Instrumental Feeding and Emotional Feeding may have a detrimental impact on children's snacking behaviour, while Encouragement, Overt Control and Covert Control may lead to less energy-dense snacking and less SSB intake. Overt Control and Covert Control have differential effects on child BMI Z-score one year later, which supports the idea that they should be treated as separate constructs. Prospective studies with a longer follow-up may elucidate the causal pathways between the various feeding styles and children's snacking behaviour and weight, as well as the moderating influences of psychological and behavioural control. Copyright © The Authors 2013.


Kuss D.J.,Nottingham Trent University | Van Rooij A.J.,IVO Addiction Research Institute | Van Rooij A.J.,Erasmus University Rotterdam | Shorter G.W.,University of Ulster | And 3 more authors.
Computers in Human Behavior | Year: 2013

As new media are becoming daily fare, Internet addiction appears as a potential problem in adolescents. From the reported negative consequences, it appears that Internet addiction can have a variety of detrimental outcomes for young people that may require professional intervention. Researchers have now identified a number of activities and personality traits associated with Internet addiction. This study aimed to synthesise previous findings by (i) assessing the prevalence of potential Internet addiction in a large sample of adolescents, and (ii) investigating the interactions between personality traits and the usage of particular Internet applications as risk factors for Internet addiction. A total of 3105 adolescents in the Netherlands filled out a self-report questionnaire including the Compulsive Internet Use Scale and the Quick Big Five Scale. Results indicate that 3.7% of the sample were classified as potentially being addicted to the Internet. The use of online gaming and social applications (online social networking sites and Twitter) increased the risk for Internet addiction, whereas extraversion and conscientiousness appeared as protective factors in high frequency online gamers. The findings support the inclusion of 'Internet addiction' in the DSM-V. Vulnerability and resilience appear as significant aspects that require consideration in further studies. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Van Rooij A.J.,IVO Addiction Research Institute | Schoenmakers T.M.,IVO Addiction Research Institute | Vermulst A.A.,Radboud University Nijmegen | Van Den Eijnden R.J.J.M.,University Utrecht | And 2 more authors.
Addiction | Year: 2011

Aims To provide empirical data-driven identification of a group of addicted online gamers.Design Repeated cross-sectional survey study, comprising a longitudinal cohort, conducted in 2008 and 2009.Setting Secondary schools in the Netherlands.Participants Two large samples of Dutch schoolchildren (aged 13-16 years).Measurements Compulsive internet use scale, weekly hours of online gaming and psychosocial variables.Findings This study confirms the existence of a small group of addicted online gamers (3%), representing about 1.5% of all children aged 13-16 years in the Netherlands. Although these gamers report addiction-like problems, relationships with decreased psychosocial health were less evident.Conclusions The identification of a small group of addicted online gamers supports efforts to develop and validate questionnaire scales aimed at measuring the phenomenon of online video game addiction. The findings contribute to the discussion on the inclusion of non-substance addictions in the proposed unified concept of 'Addiction and Related Disorders' for the DSM-V by providing indirect identification and validation of a group of suspected online video game addicts. © 2010 The Authors, Addiction © 2010 Society for the Study of Addiction.


Van Rooij A.J.,IVO Addiction Research Institute | Schoenmakers T.M.,IVO Addiction Research Institute | Van Den Eijnden R.J.J.M.,University Utrecht | Vermulst A.A.,Radboud University Nijmegen | And 2 more authors.
Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking | Year: 2012

The study explores the reliability, validity, and measurement invariance of the Video game Addiction Test (VAT). Game-addiction problems are often linked to Internet enabled online games; the VAT has the unique benefit that it is theoretically and empirically linked to Internet addiction. The study used data (n=2,894) from a large-sample paper-and-pencil questionnaire study, conducted in 2009 on secondary schools in Netherlands. Thus, the main source of data was a large sample of schoolchildren (aged 13-16 years). Measurements included the proposed VAT, the Compulsive Internet Use Scale, weekly hours spent on various game types, and several psychosocial variables. The VAT demonstrated excellent reliability, excellent construct validity, a one-factor model fit, and a high degree of measurement invariance across gender, ethnicity, and learning year, indicating that the scale outcomes can be compared across different subgroups with little bias. In summary, the VAT can be helpful in the further study of video game addiction, and it contributes to the debate on possible inclusion of behavioral addictions in the upcoming DSM-V. © Copyright 2012, Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.


van Rooij A.J.,IVO Addiction Research Institute | Schoenmakers T.M.,IVO Addiction Research Institute | van de Eijnden R.J.J.M.,University Utrecht | van de Mheen D.,Erasmus Medical Center
Journal of Adolescent Health | Year: 2010

Purpose: Increasing research on Internet addiction makes it necessary to distinguish between the medium of Internet and its specific applications. This study explores the relationship between time spent on various Internet applications (including online gaming) and Compulsive Internet Use in a large sample of adolescents. Methods: The 2007 (N = 4,920) and 2008 (N = 4,753) samples of a longitudinal survey study among adolescents were used, as well as the 2007-2008 cohort subsample (N = 1421). Compulsive Internet Use was predicted from the time spent on the various Internet applications in two cross-sectional multiple linear regression models and one longitudinal regression model in which changes in behavior were related to changes in Compulsive Internet Use. Results: In both samples, downloading, social networking, MSN use, Habbo Hotel, chatting, blogging, online games, and casual games were shown to be associated with Compulsive Internet Use. Off these, online gaming was shown to have the strongest association with Compulsive Internet Use. Moreover, changes in online gaming were most strongly associated with changes in Compulsive Internet Use over time for the longitudinal cohort. Conclusions: A clear relationship was shown between online gaming and Compulsive Internet Use. It is further argued that a subgroup of compulsive Internet users should be classified as compulsive online gamers. © 2010 Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine.


Christiansen P.,University of Liverpool | Christiansen P.,IVO Addiction Research Institute | Schoenmakers T.M.,Center for Tobacco and Alcohol Studies | Schoenmakers T.M.,Erasmus Medical Center | And 2 more authors.
Addictive Behaviors | Year: 2015

Recent years have seen an explosion of interest in attentional bias in addiction, particularly its clinical relevance. Specifically, numerous articles claimed to demonstrate either that (1) attentional bias measured in treatment settings could predict subsequent relapse to substance use, or (2) direct modification of attentional bias reduced substance use and improved treatment outcomes. In this paper, we critically evaluate empirical studies that investigated these issues. We show that the evidence regarding both of these claims is decidedly mixed, and that many of the studies that appear to yield positive findings have serious methodological and statistical limitations. We contend that the available literature suggests that attentional bias for drug cues fluctuates within individuals because it is an output of the underlying motivational state at that moment in time, but there is no convincing evidence that it exerts a causal influence on substance use. Future research should make use of experience sampling methodology to characterise the clinical significance of fluctuations in attentional bias over time. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd.


Littel M.,Erasmus University Rotterdam | Van Den Berg I.,Erasmus University Rotterdam | Luijten M.,Erasmus University Rotterdam | Van Rooij A.J.,IVO Addiction Research Institute | And 2 more authors.
Addiction Biology | Year: 2012

Excessive computer gaming has recently been proposed as a possible pathological illness. However, research on this topic is still in its infancy and underlying neurobiological mechanisms have not yet been identified. The determination of underlying mechanisms of excessive gaming might be useful for the identification of those at risk, a better understanding of the behavior and the development of interventions. Excessive gaming has been often compared with pathological gambling and substance use disorder. Both disorders are characterized by high levels of impulsivity, which incorporates deficits in error processing and response inhibition. The present study aimed to investigate error processing and response inhibition in excessive gamers and controls using a Go/NoGo paradigm combined with event-related potential recordings. Results indicated that excessive gamers show reduced error-related negativity amplitudes in response to incorrect trials relative to correct trials, implying poor error processing in this population. Furthermore, excessive gamers display higher levels of self-reported impulsivity as well as more impulsive responding as reflected by less behavioral inhibition on the Go/NoGo task. The present study indicates that excessive gaming partly parallels impulse control and substance use disorders regarding impulsivity measured on the self-reported, behavioral and electrophysiological level. Although the present study does not allow drawing firm conclusions on causality, it might be that trait impulsivity, poor error processing and diminished behavioral response inhibition underlie the excessive gaming patterns observed in certain individuals. They might be less sensitive to negative consequences of gaming and therefore continue their behavior despite adverse consequences. © 2012 The Authors, Addiction Biology © 2012 Society for the Study of Addiction.

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