It’s all fun and games until someone loses their ability to control their gaming. At least that’s how the World Health Organization sees obsessive gaming.
Gaming disorder, described as “discontinuation or escalation of gaming despite the occurrence of negative consequences,” will officially become recognized as a serious mental health disorder in 2018, according to a beta draft of the WHO’s forthcoming 11th International Classification of Diseases.
That doesn’t mean decompressing with half an hour of “Call of Duty: WWII” every night after work qualifies as an addiction. But if your prioritization of game time becomes severe enough that it takes a toll on your personal and professional lives, either continuously or in recurring spurts, you could be in need of professional help.
Experts typically need a 12-month period to assess the patient to clinically describe their condition, according to the beta draft. And while there aren’t any prevention and/or treatment options from the WHO just yet, there are plenty of treatment centers around the world to help people afflicted with video game addictions and gaming disorders (online and offline) as a whole.
Check out American Addiction Centers for video game addiction symptoms and treatment.