The WHO may add video games to its list of recognized addictions


Video gaming will be in the International Classification of Diseases Manual. "The pattern of gaming behavior may be continuous or episodic and recurrent", the description of the disorder continued.

The report indicates the problematic behavior is normally present for 12 months for a diagnosis to be made, "although the required duration may be shortened if all diagnostic requirements are met and symptoms are severe".

This is the first time that a gaming-related disorder has been officially termed by the medical community since the inclusion of "Internet Gaming Disorder" (IGD) in the DSM-5, or the Fifth Edition of The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, in 2013.

Play too many video games?

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However, despite the World Health Organization announcement, brace for a wealth of new research studies anatomizing this new ICD-11 classification. It does not recommend a specific treatment either.

In the 2013 edition of the DSM-5, it was only noted that the internet gaming disorder was a condition for further study. It's likely that substantially more research regarding Gaming Disorder/IGD will be conducted in the coming years, as researchers begin to gain a better psychological understanding of the disorder. Gamers believe that video gaming is akin to hobbies or professions.

If "gaming disorder" is classified as a mental health disorder, insurance companies and doctors will have to recognize it as such. Any activity can become a mental health issue if a person cannt control the activity.