'Gaming disorder’ now OFFICIALLY classified as a mental health condition by WHO!

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'Gaming disorder’ now OFFICIALLY classified as a mental health condition by WHO!

THANK YOU World Health Organization!

Gaming disorder’ is officially classified as a mental health condition.

Many scientists continue to be skeptical

By Samit Sarkar@SamitSarkar Jun 19, 2018, 6:30pm EDT

The World Health Organization is adding “gaming disorder” to its globally recognized compendium of medical conditions and diagnoses, the agency announced Monday — despite the objections of the video game industry and many researchers who have studied the issue, and believe the scientific evidence for the classification is weak at best.

Gaming disorder is listed under “disorders due to addictive behaviors” in the final draft of the 11th revision of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-11). The draft will be presented at the World Health Assembly in May 2019, and is scheduled to go into effect Jan. 1, 2022. The WHO released it as an “advance preview” to give countries time to prepare and train people for its implementation, the organization said in a news release.

ICD updates are a big deal in the global health care community, especially because they don’t come around very often. The current revision, ICD-10, dates back to the early 1990s, and one of its more controversial classifications — something else that is changing with ICD-11, to reflect modern medical and social attitudes — is that it categorizes being transgender as a mental disorder. These classifications matter because people and organizations around the world, including doctors, insurers, scientists and government agencies, use them as the basis for making decisions around health care practice, policy and research.

Here’s how ICD-11 defines gaming disorder:

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 addition of gaming disorder to the ICD had been in the proposal stage for months, and the WHO already seemed to be moving in this direction. That’s despite the concerns expressed by some mental health professionals, who fear that the likely downsides of codifying gaming addiction in this way would far outweigh any potential benefits….

”The WHO isn’t the only respected health body that has been trying to come up with language to describe video game addiction in a medical diagnosis. The American Psychiatric Association publishes the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). The organization released the latest DSM update, the fifth edition, in 2013. “Internet gaming disorder” is listed in DSM-5, but only as a “condition for further study” — not a clinical diagnosis….

 “It really feels like the WHO rushed this, and maybe didn’t put in the effort to listen to a wider array of researchers and scholars,” Ferguson told Polygon.

The WHO .… made the decision to add gaming disorder to ICD-11 “based on a full review of global evidence, as well as consultation with experts from all regions of the world,” said Dr. Shekhar Saxena, director of the WHO’s Department for Mental Health and Substance Use, during a press conference Monday….

Anthony M. Bean, Ph.D., is a Fort Worth, Texas-based clinical psychologist who co-authored the journal article with Ferguson. Bean pointed out that there is evidence that the WHO was influenced by pressure from Asian member states in deciding to add gaming disorder to ICD-11. Countries such as China and South Korea have considered gaming addiction a scourge for years, and have worked to address the issue through laws and other means. The WHO refuted the allegations of political pressure last year, telling Polygon that the decision to define gaming disorder in ICD-11 was “based entirely on technical considerations and not political ones.”…..

Since the WHO’s classification explicitly says it’s possible to become addicted to video games in the same way one can develop a gambling problem, it’s no surprise that the game industry sides with the people calling for a wait-and-see approach. The Entertainment Software Association, the trade body representing the U.S. gaming industry, issued a news release earlier this year highlighting a paper published by 36 mental health experts and academics — including Bean and Ferguson — that opposed the WHO’s proposal.  Liz W. opinion – just the way the scientists who worked for the tobacco industry concealed the fact that the tobacco companies were purposely putting chemicals in the tobacco to get people addicted…. With the help of their paid “scientists”, it took 30 years for the unethical ways of the cigarette companies to be brought to light!

Go to this link to read the full article: https://www.polygon.com/2018/6/19/17475632/video-game-addiction-gaming-disorder-who-icd-11

Liz Woolley

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Great, maybe there will be

Great, maybe there will be more funding for research and laws implemented. But behavioral addiction comes from somewhere and parents/schools/communities have to do their part.

Disclaimer: I'm an addict.

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World Health Organization declares gaming disorder official cond

World Health Organization declares gaming disorder official condition, publishes diagnosis criteria

By: Natalie Dreier, Cox Media Group National Content Desk

Updated: Jun 18, 2018 - 1:25 PM

Parents may think their children are addicted to video games. now The World Health Organization has declared it a new mental health condition. 

Specifically, the WHO has listed gaming disorder as a condition in the 11th edition of the International Classification of Diseases, CNN reported.

The WHO announcedlast year that it was going to include the disorder in the latest edition.

Dr. Vladimir Poznyak said the group is not setting a precedent, but instead followed “the trends, the developments, which have taken place in populations and the professional field.”

Poznyak is a member of the WHO’s Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse, the group that proposed the diagnosis to the World Health Assembly.

According to the WHO, the disorder “affects only a small proportion of people who engage in digital- or video-gaming activities.” But it also warns people to be aware of how much time they spend gaming, especially at the cost of other activities. They also want gamers to be aware of changes to their physical or psychological health and social functioning.

Being diagnosed with a gaming addiction is not new. The United Kingdom actually has private clinics that treat it, the BBC reported.

There are also clinics in the United States, such as reSTART, CNN reported. 

Hilarie Cash is the co-founder of reSTART, said she is surprised that it has taken as long as it has to include gaming disorder in the ICD.

“I’ve been surprised it’s taken so long for everybody to catch up to the fact. But I also understand that they need to have strong, researched-based evidence before they bring on a new disorder,” Cash told CNN.

But not all agree that an official diagnosis is needed. 

Anthony Bean, a licensed psychologist, said it is early to officially name the condition.

“It’s a little bit premature to label this as a diagnosis,” Bean told CNN. “I’m a clinician and a researcher, so I see people who play video games and believe themselves to be on the lines of addicted.” 

Bean said games are a coping mechanism for anxiety or depression and that the criteria used to determine gaming disorder are too broad and subjective.


Liz Woolley

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