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WHO Classifies Gaming Addiction As A Mental Disorder



The World Health Organisation (WHO) might be the cause for some parents to limit their Children’s gaming time after it declared Game Addiction as a Mental Disorder. The WHO’s International Classification of Diseases (ICD) a referenced bible of recognized and diagnosable diseases describes addiction to digital and video gaming as “a pattern of persistent or recurrent gaming behaviour” that becomes so extensive it “takes precedence over other life interests.”

The ICD, which has been updated over the past 10 years, covers 55,000 injuries, diseases and causes of death. It forms a basis for the WHO and other experts to see and respond to trends in health

Shekhar Saxena, a WHO expert on mental health and substance abuse, stated that some of the worst cases seen in global research were of gamers playing for up to a whopping 20 hours a day, forgoing sleep, meals, work or school and other daily activities.

He emphasized that only a small minority of people who play digital and video games would develop a problem, but said recognition of early warning signs may help prevent it.

“This is an occasional or transitory behaviour,” he said, adding that only if such behaviour persists for around a year could a potential diagnosis of a disorder be made.

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