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How Video Games Can Unlock Relief for People With Chronic Pain

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Since the invention of video games, there has been plenty of talk about how unhealthy and addictive they can be. While that can be true in some cases, the fact is that, when played in moderation, video games can actually be healthy for your body and mind — even if you deal with chronic pain. The right games can get you up and moving and provide a distraction from your physical ailments, and they can do wonders for your imagination so you become happier in the process.

If you deal with chronic pain, then consider picking up a controller and turning on one of the newest PlayStation or Nintendo titles. You may find that you feel better after your epic gaming session. Not convinced? Let’s talk about it below.

What Is Chronic Pain?

While we all feel pain and discomfort from time to time, you will likely start to realize when you are dealing with chronic pain. Described as a condition that lasts over three months, chronic pain can be there all of the time or it can come and go. Either way, it constantly disrupts your life. Sometimes you can go to a doctor and they might diagnose you and prescribe medicine to ease symptoms, but the pain will continue for years or even your entire life. Even if you cannot completely eliminate this discomfort, you can make it easier to tolerate.

It is important to know that you don’t have to fall down or get into an accident to experience chronic pain. In fact, there are many common contributors to chronic pain that affect millions of people every year. For instance, if you are overweight, then you could experience joint stiffness and constant back and hip pain. Or, if you have poor posture, then you may feel excessive muscle tension. Sometimes, you may get a disease that is out of your control, like Lyme disease or cancer, that can cause that chronic pain.

While we will talk about how video games can help to fight pain, we should mention that there is some truth that excessive gaming can also cause physical and mental health issues. Many professional gamers can experience many musculoskeletal issues over time due to constant sitting. Also, staring at a screen all day can cause eye strain and bad vision over time. The key is to follow the steps below but to always play in moderation.

A Healthy Distraction

The main reason that video games can help people with chronic conditions is that engaging games can help to distract us from pain so we can forget about our issues for a little while. This phenomenon has been scientifically proven. During a 2011 study, participants were asked to put their hands in freezing cold water two times. During the first instance, they just put their hand in the water with no distraction. Then they put their hand in again while a video game was up as a distraction. The result was that the participants experienced significantly higher pain tolerance while the video game was playing.

The point is that if you are just sitting there fretting about your pain, then that is all you will think about. However, if you have something else to focus your attention on, then chances are good that you will naturally put less of a focus on your pain. There are many different games and genres out there that can keep you engaged, from open-world games, like “Zelda: Breath Of The Wild,” to numerous racing games, like “Mario Kart.” These options can give you hours of entertainment and help you to cope with your pain.

Video games that can be played online can help people to deal with chronic pain and also build a sense of community. If your chronic pain is so intense that you cannot get out of the house, then playing a game online can be a way that you can still communicate with the outside world. Many video games also allow you to create groups that you play with, so try finding a group of people who also suffer from chronic pain, and you can all talk out your problems as you play.

Activity and Stress Relief

The healthy distraction that video games can create is only one of the benefits to those who experience chronic pain. Sometimes, getting off of the gaming chair to stretch and engage in physical activity can also work out some of the discomfort you are feeling. If you are not stable enough to go outside for a walk, you can play a virtual reality or fitness video game that requires you to stand up and move, and it can be a great relief. Just be sure that you know your limitations and move with caution so you don’t hurt yourself further.

If you lack the overall energy to do many tasks around the house, then know that you are not alone. We tend to have less energy as we age because we typically get around less often, eat less healthily, and get less sleep than we used to in our younger days. The good news is that a short gaming session can provide a quick boost of serotonin, which is a chemical that carries positive messages to your brain and nerves to help you feel more energetic. You can carry that newfound energy into your other chores and errands.

Finally, playing video games in moderation can also provide stress relief, both by becoming a distraction and by helping you to exercise your brain. In addition to serotonin, gaming also releases dopamine into the body, which makes us feel good in general and less worried. The point is to have fun during your game and not get too tied up in winning or beating a difficult level the first time through.

As you can see, there are a plethora of ways that video games can at least provide temporary relief from your chronic pain. Consider this advice, and you can have fun while feeling better overall.

Gaming

The director of Final Fantasy 7 Rebirth is making a final plea to content creators regarding spoilers

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Final Fantasy VII Rebirth is on the horizon, with our review already available. There’s just one week left until the game’s official release on February 29th, exclusively on PS5. This highly anticipated sequel to Remake, based on one of the most beloved video game stories, is best experienced without any spoilers, according to creative director Tetsuya Nomura.

On Twitter, Nomura made a final request for players and content creators to avoid spoiling the game for others, especially on social media and video-sharing platforms, where spoilers can spread rapidly. Naturally, there’s a specific moment that everyone is eagerly anticipating to see how it will compare to the 1997 original, and it’s bound to be quite chaotic on launch day. Nevertheless, Nomura still holds onto a glimmer of hope for humanity and has made a seemingly impossible request for content creators to exercise a degree of restraint.

It’s important to remember to include spoiler warnings when sharing content related to the game’s story on social media and video-sharing sites to avoid spoiling the experience for others. I would greatly appreciate it if you could avoid using scenes from important parts of the story in your video thumbnails.

https://x.com/finalfantasyvii/status/1760605439698591859?s=20

Nomura points out that the developers intentionally did not limit the recording and sharing features of the PS5 for any aspect of the game. They believe players should have the freedom to share and discuss their favorite gameplay moments. It remains to be seen if that trust was justified.

Do you think players and content creators will follow Nomura’s request and minimize spoilers? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section below.

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Xbox may want to become more acquainted with the Platinum Trophies on PS5 and PS4

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Obsidian’s first Xbox game, Pentiment, a historical adventure, is now available on the PS5 and PS4. From what we’ve seen, this port of a highly popular game seems to be solid, and we aim to provide you with a review soon. Meanwhile, one aspect caught our attention regarding the conversion that Microsoft may need to address in the future.

Pentiment’s list of Trophies perfectly mirrors its Xbox Achievements, featuring identical descriptions, titles, and icons. There is a slight variation between the two versions: PlayStation offers 42 trophies to unlock, whereas Xbox provides 41 achievements to earn. The distinction lies in the Platinum Trophy, which is awarded once you have collected all the other trinkets in the set.

Since it’s not included in the original game, the developer has not named the trophy, so it appears as ‘PlatinumTrophy’ in the list. This has already generated amusement among Trophy enthusiast communities. “They chose such a basic name for the Platinum Trophy and somehow still messed it up,” a fan expressed.

This issue is quite insignificant in the bigger picture and could likely be fixed with a quick update or patch. As Microsoft gains more experience with PlayStation development, we hope their command of the Trophy system will improve. After all, those platinums are difficult to earn and deserve a more memorable name.

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Brock Lesnar and Vince McMahon have been excluded from the final roster of WWE 22K24

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2K Sports unveiled the complete roster for the upcoming WWE 2K24, featuring more than 204 playable superstars, including 70 Legends who are no longer part of the main rosters, along with eight managers. However, fans were quick to point out the absence of some notable names from the list: 7-time WWE Champion Brock Lesnar and former WWE chairman and CEO Vince McMahon. Lesnar was previously excluded from the Forty Years of WrestleMania edition.

Following accusations of sex trafficking against McMahon by a former WWE employee, a report from the Wall Street Journal brought the issue to light. Although Lesnar’s name was not directly mentioned in the proceedings, insiders informed the WSJ that he was the unidentified WWE champion in question. McMahon refuted the allegations but stepped down as WWE CEO the day following the federal lawsuit.

Nonetheless, Lesnar and McMahon will still be present in the game. GameSpot has reported that the Lesnar vs. Undertaker match from WrestleMania 30 may be included in Showcase mode. It is speculated that another match already confirmed for Showcase mode (Stone Cold vs. The Rock, WrestleMania 17) will probably include an appearance from McMahon as well.

WWE 2K24 will be available for purchase on March 8th for PS5 and PS4, or March 5th for those interested in the Deluxe or WrestleMania editions.

 

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