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Positive Impacts Of Playing Games On Your Mental Health

Posted by Kerry Blake
Kerry Blake
Kerry Blake has not set their biography yet
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on Friday, 30 October 2015
in Health Blogs

More than one billion people worldwide spend at least one hour playing computer games, but is this a good or bad thing? Jane McGonigal, a successful game designer and passionate author thinks it is a good thing and she talked about it at the Nantucked Project Saturday.

Her talk gave us some insight into the world of playing games and the impacts it has on our mind and body. She also presented some interesting statistics like the fact that we spend almost 1.8 billion minutes playing the addictive facebook game Candy Crush in just one day! It may sound much and there are people who play it too much for sure, but if we play games in moderation we can actually benefit from the positive consequences which are the neurological opposite of depression.

Brain scans have shown that the most active parts of the brain during playing games are the rewards pathway system and the hippocampus. For instance, these parts of the brain are not active when we are in a bad mood, stressed and depressed. McGonigal also shared an interesting personal story. When she suffered a traumatic brain injury, she created her own game called "Jane the Concussion Slayer", to help her heal herself. That's why she has a different point of view on playing games.

A study from the East Carolina University's Psychophysiology lab measured the real effectivity of playing games for the reduction of depression and anxiety. They had 2 groups of people to different things for 30 minutes each day. One group had to read the website of the National Institute of Mental Health and the other group played the online flash games Happy Wheels, Bejeweled and Angry Birds. After that, they measured psychological and physiological responses in both groups. The results showed that the casual playing of video games decreased depression and anxiety for 57%.

Many other studies showed similar results and one thing is for sure, the casual playing of fun and relaxing games from time to time can us help relax and get in a better mood which will lead to positive effects on the overall health. Next time you feel stressed, try playing some of the famous online games like Happy Wheels, Bejeweled, Candy Crush and many others to relax a bit and get your mind of of things. This is definitely better than reaching out to alcohol, cigarettes or other unhealthy sources people use to temporary relax and deal with stress.  

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Learn more about the benefits of massage

Posted by Kerry Blake
Kerry Blake
Kerry Blake has not set their biography yet
User is currently offline
on Monday, 23 June 2014
in Health Blogs

Most people understand massage therapy as beneficial in soothing aches and reducing pain in muscles. However, what many don’t know is that various types of massage therapy extend beyond just soothing pains and aches. Latest research indicates that massage actually does help in several medical conditions. A study conducted in the US showed that only 10 minutes of this therapy reduced inflammation and helped many patients to recover from some common illnesses. Let us look at some surprising benefits that massage may have in store for you.

Reduces stress by managing depression and anxiety

It’s true that a rubdown can be the secret remedy to your stress. For a long time now, massage has been used to soothe depression and anxiety. It reduces the levels of a stress hormone known as cortisol, which results in lifted spirits as well as decreased blood pressure. It also boosts dopamine and neurotransmitters serotonin, which also play a big role in depression.(For more tips how to manage stress, check out this article from Health Tzars, written by Shruti Gaddam).

Eases pain in fatigued and injured muscles

According to a study conducted in the US by Dan Cherkin, PH.D., lead author of the study, 8 out of 10 Americans often experience debilitating back pain. He went ahead to prove that massage helped many people experiencing this pain to function and feel better compared to those who didn’t receive the treatment. It was agreed that this therapy leads to decreased stiffness and pain in muscles, especially to people suffering from osteoarthritis.

Improves sleep

Anyone who has ever been on massage table doesn’t need to be convinced that massage actually promotes healthy sleep. Numerous studies have examined this link and established that this therapy has an effect on delta waves, a kind of brain waves that is connected to deep sleep.

Boosts the body’s immunity

In 2011, researchers found that massage had a significantly big effect as far as boosting one’s immunity is concerned. It showed that the disease-fighting white blood cells of a person are increased to a considerable level. It therefore promotes healthy living and helps one keep common illnesses at bay.

Raises alertness

You won’t believe it but massage has been seen to increase a person’s brain power. This is according to a study conducted by Touch Research Institute (TRI). A number of adults who were given about 15 minutes chair massage completed a series of mathematics questions more accurately and faster.

Curbs headache pains

Just like back pain and aching muscles, headaches are also curbed thanks to massage. According to a study from 2009, conducted by Hong Kong therapists , a regular rubdown can reduce the number of migraines that you experience. Massage of about 30 minutes was seen to decrease pain in people suffering from tension headaches. While doing this, it was also established that it decreases anger that’s associated with pounding head.

Improves skin health

Maybe you never knew but regular massage especially on the face can make a big difference in your skin complexion. It has been found out that massage increases blood flow, which encourages lymphatic drainage, and therefore leading to shutting of toxins away from cells. This means that more nutrients are able to reach your skin cells hence adding vitality to dull complexion.

Whether its Deep Tissue massage, Swedish massage, Reflexology, Sports massage, Cranial Sacral therapy or Geriatric massage, you will enjoy numerous benefits as per your needs. Not only will you stay stress free, you will also keep some health conditions at bay.

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