The video game industry has experienced high growth rates in recent years. For 2016, statistics showed a worldwide collection of more than 90 million dollars and according to several studies carried out, more than 65% of teenagers between 10 and 15 years old have played video games either on consoles or computers.
A person, on average, spends approximately 3 hours a day playing video games and 15% report back pain and 38% eye strain, regardless of gender or age.
The more time it´s dedicated to play games, the more frequent gamers will complain about pain in their hands, why? Because when using the controllers, the repetitive movement of the fingers and the hands for long periods of time cause inflammation of the tendons, mainly of the thumb, also the grip position of the controller and the position of the wrists. While playing the inflammation of the rest of the tendons is influenced.
What symptoms are present?
In general, gamers present pain below the thumb or in the wrist area, showing difficulty for the mobility of the thumb, for pinching and grasping activities.
What diseases can occur?
Excessive and misuse of the controllers can lead to inflammation of some tendons such as: Quervain’s tendonitis, dorsal interosseous and adductor pollicis tendonitis, as well as epicondylitis (pain in the elbow).
How to prevent these ailments?
A basic recommendation is to play for short periods of time, if you are a professional player or you need to practice for long hours, the most viable recommendation is to periodically take active breaks.
Now, if there is already an inflammation in the hands or in any of its parts, it is recommended to apply ice as an anti-inflammatory measure, as well as the use of splints or medications, however, the first thing to do when inflammation is already present is to go to the specialist or hand surgeon.
Recommendations for the proper use of controllers
- Be aware of the position of the hands when using the controllers, hold them with both hands.
- The hands must be centered, without deviation when taking the controller.
- Do not apply great pressure when using the buttons, so that the fingers are not affected or injured.
- If a game is played for long periods of time, regularly take active break.