THE BRONX - Addiction to video games and the Internet is gaining legitimacy as a psychological disorder.

Experts say violent video games can be as addicting as drugs, with teens and young children being the most vulnerable demographic. Research from psychologists shows there is a high correlation between teens playing these games and implementing violence as a way to deal with problems.

Signs of a preoccupation with gaming could include lying, disobedience at time limits and social withdrawal. Experts suggest that parents seek psychological help if symptoms continue.

Video game addiction has been mentioned in a new Manual of Mental Disorders by the American Psychiatric Association, meaning there could be a formal diagnosis by as early as next year.