News World Video game addiction recognised as mental health disorder -Word Health Organisation

Video game addiction recognised as mental health disorder -Word Health Organisation

Addiction to video games has been officially recognised as a mental health disorder by the World Health Organisation (WHO).

The WHO’s International Classification of Diseases (ICD), describes addiction to digital and video gaming as “a pattern of persistent or recurrent gaming behavior” that becomes so extensive it “takes precedence over other life interests”.

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

He stressed 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 behavior,” he said, adding that only if such behavior persists for around a year could a potential diagnosis of a disorder be made.

Responding to the decision to including gaming addiction, the Video Games Coalition — an industry lobby group — said their products were “enjoyed safely and sensibly by more than 2 billion people worldwide” across all kinds of genres, devices and platforms.

It added that the “educational, therapeutic, and recreational value” of games was well-founded and widely recognized and urged the WHO to reconsider.

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.

“It enables us to understand so much about what makes people get sick and die, and to take action to prevent suffering and save lives,” WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in a statement as the ICD was published.

The ICD is also used by health insurers whose reimbursements depend on ICD classifications.

This latest version — known as ICD-11 — is completely electronic for the first time, in an effort to make it more accessible to doctors and other health workers around the world.

ICD-11 also includes changes to sexual health classifications. Previous editions had categorized sexual dysfunction and gender incongruence, for example, under mental health conditions, while in ICD-11 these move to the sexual health section. The latest edition also has a new chapter on traditional medicine.

The updated ICD is scheduled to be presented to WHO member states at their annual World Health Assembly in May 2019 for adoption in January 2022, the WHO said in a statement.

(With information from NBC)

Top Stories

Moody’s: Bank of Cyprus’ sale of nonperforming exposures credit positive, asset quality remains a challenge

Bank of Cyprus’ latest sale of non performing exposures is credit positive, Moody’s rating agency says while pointing that weak asset quality remains the...

Greece’s PM: “If we can’t reach an agreement with Turkey, let’s go to The Hague”

The pandemic and Greek-Turkish relations were among the topics touched on by Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis on Wednesday, while participating in the 2020 Aspen...

The four possible scenarios for the new school year

The Ministry of Education is busy planning ahead in terms of digital technology and distance learning in case they need to implement it in...

Mitsero residents object to planned relocation of asphalt plants

Government plans to move the asphalt plants located in the industrial zones of Dali-Tseri to Mitsero area has sparked the anger of the community...

Bus in Nicosia rolls forward after driver jumped out, causes havoc (PHOTOS)

A bus on Diagorou Street in the heart of Nicosia on Thursday morning rolled forward after the driver had just jumped out. No one was...

Taste

Octopus ‘Kathisto’ (or Octopus braised in Wine)

Ingredients: 1/2 cup Greek extra virgin olive oil 2 medium onions, chopped fine 1 large octopus, about 2kg (cleaned and kept whole) 3/4 cup dry red wine 1/3 cup...

Homemade lemonade

Ingredients: 1 cup lemon juice 1 cup sugar Method: Thoroughly wash the lemons with soap and warm water. Roll each lemon with the palm of your hand, pressing...

‘Striftaria’ mini cheese pies

Ingredients 1 ½ cup milk 2 tbsps. flour 4 tsps. of butter 3 eggs, slightly beaten + 1 extra with 1 tbs. of milk for spreading 1 pack of...

Mini potato canapes baked on salt

Ingredients Serves: 12 1kg small Cypriot potatoes rock salt, as needed 250g salted butter 300ml full fat cremé frâiche 1 pot cod or salmon roe Method Prep:20min › Cook:35min › Ready in:55min Take...