Games beware: playing too many video games could officially be classified as a mental health issue. The World Health Organization will add “gaming disorder” to the 11th update of the International Classification of Diseases next year, USA Today reports.
According to a beta draft from the WHO, the disorder is qualified as a “pattern of persistent or recurrent gaming behavior” either online or offline, that basically takes over a gamer’s “life interests and daily activities,” despite possible consequences.
“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 draft states.
Gaming has grown into a $100 billion global industry, with nearly half of the revenue coming from mobile games.
The WHO’s classification means that gaming disorder will be recognized by doctors and insurance providers.