Power Up: How to Stay Pain Free While Gaming

With fall approaching, it’s a big time of year for highly anticipated games to be released. Gaming has become a major source of entertainment for millions of people, and though it’s not exactly a sport in the conventional sense, gamers still need to pay attention to their bodies.

Gaming, while fun and engrossing, can hurt you if you don’t pay attention. With that in mind, we wanted to suggest some simple precautions before embarking on your next gaming marathon.

Gaming is a fun activity. However, like anything else, you have to pay attention to your body.

Gaming Thumb

One of the most prominent conditions that a long gaming session can cause is carpal tunnel syndrome. Carpal tunnel syndrome is caused when the major nerve that runs through your wrist is aggravated, causing symptoms like pain and numbness around the affected hand.

When gaming, this can be caused by extended use of controllers or computer keyboards that sometimes force the user to hold their wrist at odd angles without noticing. This causes muscles in the wrist to swell up, constricting the nerve and causing pain.

Like any physical activity, your body benefits by stretching beforehand. Taking some time to properly stretch out your hands and wrists can make a big difference when your gaming sessions run long. With that said, some of the best advice you can get when it comes to preventing carpal tunnel is just getting up and taking a break every once in a while. Again, it’s easy to forget this since gaming can be a relatively low-impact activity, but it can still tax your body if you don’t pay attention.

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Stand Tall

Posture is another thing that can escape you while playing your favorite game. It’s easy to understand; when things get intense in-game, you may slouch forward and perch your elbows on your legs in an effort to concentrate. Or, it can be the complete opposite; when relaxed, you simply drape yourself over the couch like an old jacket. Both positions wreak havoc on your posture and the muscles holding you up.

If you know you’re not going to move for a while, an ergonomically designed gaming chair is a good investment to provide the proper body support while playing. If one isn’t available, then simply making an effort to maintain proper posture can help alleviate aches and pains that arise. Again, simply taking breaks to walk around and stretch works best for treating and preventing any discomfort that comes up.

Helping You Overcome Pain

Pain is a tricky thing to treat, but at Total Pain Care, we specialize in bringing you the best care possible for whatever is bothering you. We work with our patients to develop effective treatment plans that both address and prevent pain anywhere in the body. If you want to fight back against pain and learn more about how we can help, contact us online or give us a call at 973.754.2499.

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  1. Ronald Amaya, PA-C is a Physician Assistant. He attended Weill Cornell Medical College and received his physician assistant degree in NYC. He has 18 years of experience in cardiothoracic surgery and over 8 years in pain management. Dr. Amaya is NCCPA board-certified in medicine and surgery.

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  3. Andrew D. Bunn, MD is a pain management specialist. Dr. Bunn also serves as the co-director of East Boston Neighborhood Health Center, as well as the Program Director for Lahey Hospital & Medical Center and Newborn Services | MassGeneral Hospital for Children. After earning his medical degree from Drexel University College of Medicine, he completed his anesthesia residency at Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania where he also completed his fellowship in pain management. He is board-certified in both anesthesiology and pain management.

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