Date registered: Oct 2002
Vehicle: SLK32, ML430
Location: Atlanta, GA
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The AMA - What a Joke
Everything is a fucking diease these days.
Of course I guess by classifying it as a disease means that they can get Medicaid reimbursement for treating this non-sense.
Hey, I have an idea. How about parents just saying NO - little Johnny take your ass outside. No more video games for you for the rest of the week. You are talking back to me? How about 2 weeks of no video games. Want to try for a month?
AMA to vote on "internet/video-game addiction" as medical condition
By Linda Shrieves
Posted June 21 2007
So you think your teenager is addicted to his Xbox?
You may be right — and if the American Medical Association has its way, video game addiction could become a legitimate medical condition.
It may sound like a bunch of hooey to a nation of Wii, Xbox and PlayStation enthusiasts, but next week, at the AMA's national meeting in Chicago, delegates will vote on a recommendation that "Internet/video-game addiction" be classified as a formal diagnosis.
For 160 years, the AMA has made recommendations on the nation's health that are quickly adopted. They range from recommending cars be equipped with seat belts to calling for annual mammograms for women older than 50.
But not everyone's buying into this new malady. "I'm an addiction skeptic," said Steve Jones, a communications professor at the University of Illinois and a research fellow with the Pew Internet & American Life Project.
"Just because any activity might interfere with other activities is not enough to call it an addiction."
An AMA report notes that the heaviest game players are those who play MMORPGs — massive multiplayer online role-playing games such as World of Warcraft. And those players, says the AMA, are more likely to be socially isolated — and probably addicted.
That's no surprise to Eric Frisella, 17, of Orlando. Eric, who plays World of Warcraft, sometimes wonders if he's addicted to the game. During the school year, he says he plays about 30 hours a week — often staying up until 1 a.m. playing every night.
"I can definitely see how it's possible for people to get addicted," Eric said. "There are times when I think I could be, but then I realize I can have a lot more fun hanging out in the real world with my friends."
In his practice, Dr. Joseph Keeley, an Orlando pediatrician, says he has seen evidence of addiction.
"There are some kids who clearly act like they're addicted and, when you take them off, they'll go through withdrawal. They'll get irritable and hard to live with," Keeley said.
But the problem hit home when he drove his daughter to Northwestern University last fall. There, a dean told him that 3 percent to 4 percent of the freshmen boys move into the dormitory, get their high-speed Internet hooked up— and never go to class.
"Needless to say, that's troublesome," Keeley said.
Jones, the University of Illinois professor who has studied college students' use of video games, said American society overreacts to new technology —particularly when it involves children. He said it started back in the 1920s, when there was hand-wringing about how movies were causing children to spend too much time inside.
"Fast forward, we started to hear the same thing about TV, then about comic books, the same thing about rock 'n' roll, the same thing about rap music and the same thing about the Internet," Jones said.
The AMA vote would be only a first step, because it then would pass the baton to the American Psychiatric Association, which publishes the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, the primary handbook used to diagnose mental illnesses and disorders.
But the psychiatrists' group takes the AMA's recommendations seriously, said APA medical director Dr. James Scully.
"We, along with them, share a concern for children's well-being and children who spend too much time playing video games is a concern, especially video games that contain violence," Scully said.