Being a hardcore gamer often gets you heckled for not being more active. But the seemingly “lazy” activity can actually lead to injuries ranging from mild to serious. Before you assume that spending some time on your favorite console can’t lead to visits with medical professionals, consider these points.

Think You Can’t Get Hurt Gaming? You’re Wrong

PlayStation Thumb

Though this injury isn’t exclusive to PlayStation owners, PlayStation thumb involves the strain related to using the thumbs to perform operations on console game controllers. Common symptoms include soreness, numbness, tingling, redness, and blisters. Considered a repetitive use injury, relief often requires rest at a minimum, though more severe cases may require the care of a physician.

Wiitis

The Wii added a new level of activity to video gaming, along with a set of injuries referred to as Wiitis. These injuries relate to overuse of the Wii remote that leads to the formation of tendinitis. Some variants of Wiitis include Wii should, from playing tennis or golf, Wii knee, from bowling and baseball, as well as Wii elbow, from tennis or fencing.

Hand and Head Contact Injuries

When you begin using the Wii, you are reminded to be aware of your surroundings and to make sure you have sufficient space for the activities you intend to enjoy. However, many people neglect these warnings, and ultimately slam their hands into nearby objects, including other players. In some cases, the player incidentally hits someone in the head during a swing, leading to head injuries of varying severity.

Back and Neck Injuries

While you play your favorite games, you’re likely not overly concerned about your posture. Keeping the hands extended forward hunches the shoulders, strains the neck, and curves the back. Over time, irritation occurs which can result in pain.

Similarly, the back and neck are at risk if you participate vigorously in more active gaming methods. This includes using the Wii or interacting with an Xbox via the Kinect.

Muscle Strain and Other Injuries

Due to the fun nature of the activities, it is easy to forget that these workouts can get pretty intense. People regularly experience muscle stiffness and strains, as well as pulled muscles. Some players have even suffered dislocations and fracture as a result of their play.

Death

While dying as a result of gaming is extremely rare, it has occurred. Often, these relate to hardcore gamers who played for very extended periods of time. One of the more common causes involve a deep vein thrombosis, or DVT, referred to as Gamer’s Thrombosis. A DVT is a blood clot that can become deadly if it reaches key areas in the body, such as the heart or lungs. A leading cause of DVT is remaining immobile for long periods of time, similar to how travelers are on an airplane. Gaming for hours upon hours can yield the same results.

As you can see, there are numerous potential injuries you can sustain while gaming. So do yourself a favor, look into health care options (including health insurance Florida for those living in the sunshine state), get some ice packs on standby, and proceed with caution. And, if you ever experience unexpected pain and swelling in one of your legs, consider getting it checked out.