The World Health Organisation have recently classified gaming addiction as a disorder. The BBC reported on this in their article ‘Gaming addiction classified as a disorder by WHO’. In this article, they reported how research ‘looking at children aged eight to 18 – found that boys spent longer playing video games than girls.’ I am aged 17 and a female gamer. I don’t exactly broadcast that I am a gamer, I just enjoy the games I like to play. Gaming is quite a large part of my life as when I am not playing a game or drawing, my attention isn’t occupied, and I am not enjoying myself as much as I enjoy gaming. I personally don’t agree with gaming addiction being classified as a disorder. There are other things such as guns, violence and crime which are harmful for young people. But I do understand that gaming can have an impact on mental health.

I usually spend up to 2/3 hours gaming a day. In writing this post, I researched what a healthy number of hours to spend gaming would be. The results I have viewed weren’t the results I wanted- mainly because it appears that nobody knows the correct amount of time you should spend gaming! How are teenagers supposed to know that they’re way over the time that is appropriate for gaming if there is no set guideline?

I believe that teenagers won’t know what they’re doing wrong, or that their behaviour might be harmful to them, until we raise awareness. As a gamer, often I feel that what we don’t realise is how many hours we are actually spending on our consoles. Because we haven’t been educated or informed on what a healthy amount of time to be gaming for would be, most teenagers don’t feel like they’re doing anything wrong. In reality, their mental health is massively being affected as hours become bags under their eyes and back ache and headaches become continuous.

Leah

Neuro Champion Young Leader