A council from the nation's largest doctors' group is working to have "video game behavior" officially classified as a psychiatric disorder, to raise awareness and enable sufferers to get insurance coverage for treatment.
The group prepared a report for the American Medical Association's annual policy meeting which is being held this week in Chicago and hopes to lobby for the disorder to be included in a widely used mental illness manual created and published by the American Psychiatric Association. The report says that 90 percent of American youth play video games and as many as 15 percent of them, which is more than 5 million kids, may be addicted.
According to the AP, that addiction translates into gamers yelling, ignoring their friends and family, not showering, not eating properly and letting their responsibilities and school work slide. The story also references a kid who went from being an "outgoing, academically gifted teen" to a "reclusive manipulator who flunked two 10th grade classes and spent several hours day and night playing World of Warcraft."
Personally, I'm sick and tired of people blaming video games and culture for all the troubles in the lives of adolescents - particularly males - and while internet or video game addictions can't be taken lightly, I'm not convinced World of Warcraft could turn someone into a "reclusive manipulator." Then again, I'm no doctor and I'm not addicted to video games. What do you think? Would you classify video game addiction as a psychiatric disorder?