ADDICTA: The Turkish Journal on Addictions
Original Research

Relationship between Internet Gaming Disorder Symptoms with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and Alexithymia Symptoms among University Students


Bakırköy Training and Research Hospital for Psychiatry Neurology and Neurosurgery, Research, Treatment and Training Center for Alcohol and Substance Dependence (AMATEM), İstanbul, Turkey


Department of Psychiatry, Baltalimanı State Hospital for Musculoskeletal Disorders, İstanbul, Turkey


Private Practice, Ankara, Turkey


Department of Psychology, Çankaya University, Ankara, Turkey


Department of Psychology and Psychiatry, University of Toledo, OH, USA

Addicta 2020; 7: 1-9
DOI: 10.5152/addicta.2020.19076
Read: 4168 Downloads: 1008 Published: 06 April 2020

The aim of the present study was to evaluate the relationship between Internet gaming disorder (IGD) symptom severity with probable attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and alexithymia symptoms, while controlling anxiety and depression symptoms. The cross-sectional online study was conducted with 987 volunteer university students in Ankara, Turkey. Age was lower and first Internet use was earlier among the group with probable ADHD (n=166, 16.8%) than that without (n=821, 83.2%). There were no significant differences in gender or romantic relationship status between these groups, whereas the scale scores, duration of daily Internet gaming, and problems related to Internet gaming were higher in the probable ADHD group. Probable ADHD, continuous scores on alexithymia (particularly “difficulty identifying feelings” [DIF] and “externally oriented thinking” [EOT] dimensions), depression, and anxiety symptoms were associated with higher severity of IGD symptoms. ADHD, alexithymia (as a binary variable), depression, and anxiety predicted the severity of IGD symptoms, although these effects involving probable ADHD and alexithymia did not interact. These findings suggest that probable ADHD and both the severity of alexithymia (particularly DIF and EOT dimensions) and presence of probable alexithymia are related with the severity of IGD symptoms, even when controlling the effects of depression and anxiety, among university students.

Cite this article as: Evren, C., Evren, B., Dalbudak, E., Topçu, M., Kutlu, N., & Elhai, J. D. (2020). Relationship between internet gaming disorder symptoms with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and alexithymia symptoms among university students. Addicta: The Turkish Journal on Addictions, 7(1), 1-9.

ISSN 2148-7286 EISSN 2149-1305