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World Health Organization Lists Video Gaming Addiction as a Disorder

December 30, 2017Written by Zarmena Khan

video game addiction

The World Health Organization has published its draft revision of International Compendium of Diseases, which now includes video gaming addiction as a disorder for the first time.

Under “Disorders due to addictive behaviors,” a description reads:

Gaming disorder is characterized by a pattern of persistent or recurrent gaming behavior (‘digital gaming’ or ‘video-gaming’), which may be online (i.e., over the internet) or offline, manifested by: 1) impaired control over gaming (e.g., onset, frequency, intensity, duration, termination, context); 2) increasing priority given to gaming to the extent that gaming takes precedence over other life interests and daily activities; and 3) continuation or escalation of gaming despite the occurrence of negative consequences. The behavior pattern is of sufficient severity to result in significant impairment in personal, family, social, educational, occupational or other important areas of functioning. The pattern of gaming behavior may be continuous or episodic and recurrent. The gaming behavior and other features are normally evident over a period of at least 12 months in order for a diagnosis to be assigned, although the required duration may be shortened if all diagnostic requirements are met and symptoms are severe.

The 11th revision of IDC is due out in 2018. It has already attracted criticism from the gaming community including professional players.

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[Source: WHO]