Addiction experts: Video games aren't an addiction

Apparently the doctors from the American Medical Association (AMA) who were looking to have video game addiction classified as a disease have backed away from their decision. They now recommend the American Psychiatric Association, who would have had the final word on the matter anyway, consider doing more research into the issue and possibly add the diagnosis to their revision of the DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders) in 2012. The AMA doctors who believe video game addiction exists say it affects approximately 10% of players, but say more study is needed.
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"There is nothing here to suggest that this is a complex physiological disease state akin to alcoholism or other substance abuse disorders, and it doesn't get to have the word addiction attached to it," said Dr. Stuart Gitlow of the American Society of Addiction Medicine and Mt. Sinai School of Medicine in New York. But Dr. Thomas Allen of the Osler Medical Center says, "Working with this problem is no different than working with alcoholic patients. The same denial, the same rationalization, the same inability to give it up." But is that addiction, compulsion or just playing really bad games? That's the question.

Dr. Louis Kraus who deals in child and adolescent psychiatry says it's not such cause-and-effect issue. He says certain kids just have a more "compulsive component" in what they do. Kinda sounds like the same argument about kids who play video games and kill. The AMA will make its final recommendation on the issue later this week.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.