Being a gamer may be an amazing thing, getting lost in many different worlds, stories and characters. But, it does come with many risks, especially if you are a PC gamer. Even though these risks may also be true for console gamers, but the effects are much more intense for gamers who are hunched in front of their screens all day.
First thing is first, I myself am a PC gamer and I know the consequences of being constantly in front of my computer screen all day, gaming, typing or not exercising enough combined with having your arms, hands and legs in an almost static position all day is extremely damaging to muscle health.
This may also go for anyone who is in front of the computer for extended periods of times. But, if a person is doing work on his PC, chances are he will probably move around and not be stuck in the same position for several hours at a time.
General Health Issues
You know when your mom kept telling you that playing on your computer all day will make you go blind? Well, that is true more or less. Firstly, staring at a computer screen for many hours a day isn’t as damaging as you though. What really damages your eyes is a few factors:
- exercising your close-vision, and not looking at far away things
- Not getting enough sunlight
- Flashy light when playing games
by choosing to be on the computer all day, you probably neglect looking at far away things, which is extremely health to maintain a healthy, flexible cornea.
Sunlight is very important for your eyesight.
The human eye contains photosensitive cells in its retina, with connections directly to the pituitary gland in the brain. Stimulation of these important cells comes from sunlight, in particular, the blue unseen spectrum
Not only your eyes, but also your brain is stimulated and refreshed in sunlight, making it a vital for eye health as well as overall general health.
You probably never realized, that your eyes get tired faster when playing games than reading text, watching TV and so on. The reason for that is as mentioned before, the eyes have photosensitive cells which, like anything, get tired, this leads to your eyes feeling heavy after a long intensive gaming session.
This effect is specially true for first person shooters, and even some strategy games like StarCraft 3, Diablo 3, DotA 2 and so on.
Diet related issues
I know that whenever you’re physically and mentally invested in a video game, you just don’t want to do anything else. Food, drinks and even body’s physical responses start failing after you’ve reach a level. Constantly thinking of the next thing in that video game, eating little.
When it comes to gamer health, your diet is important. When gaming, it is easy to over eat or eat too little. If you are already overweight, gaming and junk food mix very well to increase your weight as well as deposit layers of fat in your heart, disrupt kidney and liver functions due to getting hooked up on energy drinks and even cause death in certain instances.
Refer to article, recent death of a Twitch streamer after streaming for over 20 hours.
If you are rather skinny, you can easily eat too little and play for too long, ignoring all vital body signs telling you to stop. This happens a lot, and risk of death increases. Along with the usual health problems, if you eat too much, the fat you gain will be focused on your tummy, and chest area more than your legs, and arms, increasing chances of heart diseases.
There is very good evidence that there is a strong relationship between drinking sugar sweetened beverages and gaining weight, so if a gamer is not on a healthy diet or getting enough exercise they might face obesity
Even if you do gaming marathons, remembering to drink water, eating a healthy diet is extremely crucial, as it may literally mean life or death. What still surprises me, is that gamers are lead to believe that them gaming for long sessions is a acceptable. I’m not stopping you from playing, but I’m certainly sure unless you exercise and take care of your diet, you will get ill.
I would suggest the same kind of foods that would be good for anyone to eat: lots of fruits and vegetables and a diet of relatively low fat foods
Energy drinks are BAD FOR YOUR HEALTH, people get hopped up on energy drinks, if they become tired, or sleepy, those energy drinks may wake you up for a while, and even keep you energized, but after the buzz is over, your body will crash.
Exercising to maintain a healthy weight decreases a person’s risk of developing certain diseases, including type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure
By consuming a large amount of energy drinks, you’re consuming a huge dose of caffeine, and sugars. Which are not healthy for you, make you obese and generally cause gastrointestinal problems.
the aforementioned energy drinks are horrible for you, they do keep you awake and may give you a wave of energy but that is unnatural and the opposite of what your body actually needs. Sleep is the most important thing your body requires, it is essential to maintain body health, especially of the brain, stomach, intestines, and heart.
over burdened gaming will lead to you getting sleep deprived, causing lack of cognition, memory loss, slower decision making, and a sense of impending doom. Sleep is vital for a health person, it will help you stay in top notch condition and will even help you in your gaming.
researchers in Australia and New Zealand reported that sleep deprivation can have some of the same hazardous effects as being drunk
Sleep deprivation has also been linked to cause diabetes, heart problems, weight gain, strokes, and even death in extreme cases. It is vital for anyone who wants to maintain a health way of life rely on their body’s senses and warnings of when it needs sleep, otherwise you life will be come a living hell.
Among the possible physical consequences of sleep deprivation, deficits in attention and working memory are perhaps the most important
Brain development in children
You probably hear a lot on the news that gaming improves reflexes, decision making and much more. But, for children, it has a downside. A very popular game called Minecraft is extremely addicting, especially to children. why I chose Minecraft especially is because it’s actually makes children socially awkward, and taint their social development.
What most people believe a game to improve mental health and intelligence in game actually makes them extremely addicted to the game, this is especially amplified if the child is under 10 years of age. Minecraft may be helpful in mental development in small doses but spending a long time in front of a screen, staying home and not exercising will result to ill children, mental problems and social development issues.
Children should be encouraged to eat healthy foods from an early age, and to avoid foods that are high in fat and sugar, as far as possible
Other than the simple fact that Minecraft is sold as a family friendly game, the fact that no parent can control and monitor what goes on on multiplayer servers of the game, means that children may actually be learning stuff way above their age and getting wrong and twisted, ideas from a game.
If you’re an adult, supervision of your child playing any game is a good idea, at least until they are old enough to make their old decisions and understand. If your child is under 10 years of age, cutting on his gaming hours will result in a happier child in the long run and a healthier one too.
Outside interaction and outdoor playtime is important for a child’s mental growth. children can learn to cooperate and learn to understand different point of views.
Much of this learning and understanding
takes place through play, which experts stress is a complex series of skills that take time to
develop. As your child begins to play with others, s/he will learn via trial and error to cooperate
and negotiate with other children through sharing and taking turns.
Gaming in general is not a bad thing for children, but anything in excess is harmful. If your child pays more attention to gaming than his diet, it could result in early onset if child diabetes as well as anorexia in some. If your child plays video games, be sure to give him a proper diet, and if have to , force him to eat healthy.
Muscle loss and weakness
If you don’t exercise in general, no matter what you do, you will be resultant to muscle loss or muscle atrophy. This muscle loss is actually highlighted in gamers, especially. humans are not programmed to sit down for several hours in synthetically lit areas. If your routine has been playing video games and hardly going out or doing exercise, you are subjected to some serious muscle loss.
flexibility and power decrease substantially after just one week of inactivity, endurance will decline after two weeks
This loss occurs to everyone and increases with age. There are many ways to avoid this muscle loss, and the clear answer is exercise and a controlled diet.
The rate of sarcopenia picks up as we age; by the time we get to age 50, a person can lose 0.4 pounds of muscle every year
Sitting for too long has adverse affects to your back, especially if you have a back rest chair you play on. When you are sitting without a back rest, your back muscles will be the ones holding your upper body weight, which will strengthen them and your backbone is not under stress.
Research has shown that chronic inactivity causes marked degeneration of virtually every measure of physical fitness, such as relatively obvious problems like the degeneration of reflexes
But, sitting in chairs causes your back muscles to not take a lot of the stress and all the stress is put on your backbone, this causes a rounded back, and other health issues which may include osteoporosis, troubles going to the toilet and much more.
connecting inactivity to cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and cancer
Along with the well-known carpal tunnel, your hands and legs will generally get weaker and weaker, this will cause you to have trouble lifting the slightest things, holding things and your hands may even start to shake and your finger joints may become less lubricated, causing jerky hand motions.
These health problems are usually highlighted in gamers who spend most of their time in front of their computers/consoles and hardly ever exercise, these issues are seriously damaging to your health and must not be taken lightly.
The best advice anyone can give you, to spend a normal, healthy life and still game is to exercise, improve your diet, cut down on sodas and energy drinks and get enough sleep. This the summery of how to stay relatively healthy in any situation, especially if you’re a gamer.