World Health Organization Officially Lists Gaming Addiction as Disorder

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That could stem from time sunk into gaming, or neglecting other priorities, or from risky behaviors associated with it (like, say, forgetting to eat or sleep).

Continuation or escalation of gaming despite the occurrence of negative consequences.

The ICD defines gaming disorder as a pattern of persistent or recurrent gaming behaviour, which may be online, or offline. Overall, the research suggest gaming addiction is very similar to a gambling disorder and substance use disorders - in fact, the 11th edition of the International Classification of Diseases, listed Gaming Disorder right below the former.

To suffer from the disease you must "experience significant impairment in personal, family, social, educational, occupational or other important areas of function" and you must have lived with this for at least one year'. A diagnosis would have to include evidence of this type of behavior lasting for more than 12 months, the organization said. Although that may sound intense, so was her video game addiction. They continue on to assure the masses that playing video games for hours on end doesn't necessarily mean you have the disorder, the situation must be much more serious than binge gaming. The pattern of gaming behaviour may be continuous or episodic and recurrent.

"ICD is a cornerstone of health information and ICD-11 will deliver an up-to-date view of the patterns of disease", said Lubna Alansari, WHO's Assistant Director-General (Health Metrics and Measurement). Some propose that it's merely a coping mechanism for people struggling with anxiety or depression.

WHO has said gaming disorder is a serious health condition that requires monitoring
WHO has said gaming disorder is a serious health condition that requires monitoring

'Gaming Disorder' has now officially been categorized as a mental illness, according to the World Health Organization.

The proposed disorder falls under the category of substance abuse or addictive behaviors, which reads: "Disorders due to substance use and addictive behaviours are mental and behavioural disorders that develop as a result of the use of predominantly psychoactive substances, including medications, or specific repetitive rewarding and reinforcing behaviours".

Anthony Bean, a licensed psychologist and executive director at the non-profit health clinic The Telos Project, told CNN that labeling gaming disorder as a diagnosable condition was "premature".

UKIE already has their own FAQ up about the issue, which explains the controversy and the genuine disagreement in academic circles as to whether gaming addiction counts as a separate disorder.

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