Gaming is an activity enjoyed by people of all ages. A report found that more than 214 million Americans play video games one hour or more per week. Young and old can spend hours sitting in front of a screen exploring an open world map or going against their friends online.
Many people do not know that these long hours spent in front of a screen may be taking a serious toll on your body. That is why our chiropractor West Omaha team wants to share three common injuries gamers experience and some ways to treat them.
Common video game-related injuries
If you are a PC gamer, you may have experienced gaming shoulder pain at some point. This kind of pain is also referred to as “mouse shoulder.” The two causes of this kind of pain are using a mouse without arm support and the constant repetitive motion.
After gaming for a certain period of time, have you gotten a headache? You might have developed a tension-type headache, also known as a stress headache. This type of headache does not originate in the head but from the upper back and neck.
Gamers may develop tension-type headaches due to poor posture. Sometimes gamers may develop what is called an upper crossed syndrome, which means they lean their heads towards the screen with rounded shoulders. Being in this position for long periods adds stress to your upper back and neck, resulting in a headache.
One common video game injury that Playstation, Xbox and Nintendo Switch users might struggle with is Gamer’s thumb, also referred to as Quervain’s Tenosynovitis. This injury causes inflammation in the thumb’s tendons resulting in swelling, thumb and wrist pain.
Just like gaming shoulder pain, a gamer’s thumb results from repetitive motion. The same motion for an extended period causes a strain on the thumb’s tendons. Gamer’s are not the only ones who are vulnerable to developing this injury; smartphone users may also develop it.
How to prevent and treat video game injuries
If you have or are currently experiencing any of the symptoms listed above, here are some ways to treat and prevent video game-related injuries.
Get proper equipment
The correct gaming equipment can help you prevent gaming injuries from occurring in the first place. If you find yourself spending most of your time gaming, invest in a chair with proper back and arm support and keep the screen at eye level.
Take regular breaks
Too much of something is never good. Although you may be determined to get to the next level or support your online team, be sure to take breaks. Putting a pause on your video game for several minutes gives your hands a break from the repetitive motion and allows you to stretch.
See a chiropractor
If you are experiencing gaming shoulder pain or a gamer's thumb, it is a good idea to see a chiropractor. These professionals can help heal and prevent gaming-related injuries. A chiropractor West Omaha professional can help realign your back, ease muscle tension and decrease pressure on your nerves.
Need a chiropractor in West Omaha?
See Wisniewski Chiropractic! We provide spinal and extremity manipulation treatments for preventing and relieving pain. Schedule your appointment to see us today!