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Video Game Addiction Is Now a Mental Disorder

Video Game Addiction Is Now a Mental Disorder

Visitors play Battle Challenge game at the Paris Games Week, a trade fair for video games in Paris, France, October 29, 2016. | Reuters/Charles Platiau

The World Health Organization is adding video game addiction to the growing list of mental disorders. According to WHO, people who play video games too much could be having a "gaming disorder."

WHO plans to officially include gaming disorder to the official international classification of diseases next year. This disorder involves a person's inability to control when to play video games, to the point of prioritizing playing games over his other hobbies in life and playing without thinking of its negative consequences.

A report from the marketing group of NPD reveals that people in the U.S. have spent as much as $1.9 billion on video game console this 2017, 27 percent higher from video game console spending in the country last year.

A mother from Knoxville, Meredith Prince, said it's not a good idea to let children spend hours playing video games. "Just during the school year they can't play during the week, and then they can play on the weekends," she said.

Prince shared that while it is sometimes good to let children play video games, parents should limit video game playing if they want their children to be active. "My kids love to bike, they love to play basketball, they love to do things outside," she said.

Meanwhile, Libby Raipstein said video game addiction has a lot to do with how parents raise their children. "Not so sure that I actually agree with that, I think parents have a lot to do with what children do and how they're raised and they can help control and put boundaries on video games," she said.

While most parents think video gaming is bad, gamers think playing video games is just akin to other life interests. "It's just passing time, it's the same as playing sports or anything else. It doesn't really affect you in any other way," said gamer Elias Coy.


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