The latest report of the World Health Organization, which lists the diseases that can threaten the well-being of citizens internationally, this year adds an addiction that until now did not seem so dangerous: excessive gaming, or play a lot of video games.

In particular, “harmful game” and “game disorder” are the two meanings to be taken into account from now on. With ” harmful game,” the WHO refers to when a user creates a game pattern, online or offline, which significantly increases the risk of health damage, both physically and mentally, not only for those who play but also for those who are around.

With ” game disorder,” the WHO qualifies it as the recurring pattern of play, also online or offline, where there is a widespread lack of control over some factors that, from now on, users can control to see if they should or Do not worry about the issue. What are these three indicators to take into account?

In the first place, we must pay attention to the lack of control over the game: the increase in time, frequency, intensity … without knowing how to set a limit.

Second, the priority grows: daily routines change to suit the game, and play begins to be above social relationships, for example.


Third, if the user continues to play despite being aware of the negative consequences, it means that he is not able to leave because he has already generated an addiction.

This decision of the WHO puts the abuse of drugs in the same section as the game disorder, something that has hit many in the first instance. Also, the association of the United States game has already pronounced itself before the new WHO publication, accusing it of trivializing other problems and much more severe and chronic disorders of mental health.

This is the first update that WHO has made of its International Classification of Diseases since 1990, and a decade ago that the issue of addiction to video games is on the table.