WHO Officially Declared Digital And Video Gaming Addiction As A Mental Health Disorder

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We all have known about Addiction, it is a psychological and physical inability to stop consuming or using something which may cause us psychological and physical harm. Like alcohol addiction, smoking addiction, drug addiction etc. but do you ever heard of digital or video gaming addiction? Yes it’s also an addiction and as per WHO report “addiction to video games is categorized under mental health disorder”.

There was a time when children just used to play physical games with their peers, but today we are in the era of technology where we are surrounded by lots and lots of gadgets and machines. Today even children’s are not away from the attraction of the technological world, they have forgotten the physical games and get addicted to the digital and video games.  

In its recent updates World Health Organization has officially added digital and video game addiction to International Classification of Diseases (ICD) as a gaming disorder. ICD is originally designed as a health care classification system which provide a system of diagnostic codes for classifying diseases, ICD is revised periodically. The eleventh revision of ICD11 is accepted by WHO’s World Health Assembly on 25th of May 2019 and will come into effect on 1 January 2022. In ICD 11th revision gaming disorder is defined as a pattern of gaming behaviour characterized by:
  • Impaired control over gaming.
  • Giving more priority to gaming over other necessary activities.
  • Continuation of gaming even in case of negative consequences.

WHO expert on mental health and substance abuse, Mr. Shekhar Saxena said “some of the worst cases seen in global research were gamers used to keep playing for 20 hours a day, and not having proper meals, sleep, work or other routine activities”.

As per studies gaming disorders do not affects vast majority of people, but still people who are into the digital and video gaming activities should be in alert to the time they are spending in digital world and  try not to prioritize your gaming schedule over the daily activities.

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