Games in Healthcare

FWD News: Lazy Eye can Improve With Gaming

Image of an Eye ExamOptometry research has been looking at new ways to treat the highly common disorder of lazy eye. While eye patches were long believed to be the only, if imperfect, solution to this problem, new studies have reinforced the notion that having patients play video games could result even greater outcomes.

Amblyopia, also known as lazy eye, is a neurological disorder where the vision in one eye does not develop properly. It is a major cause of permanent visual impairment in childhood and affects nearly three percent of children, according to the National Eye Institute. It is also the most common cause of one-eye visual impairment among young and middle-aged adults. Read More...

FWD News: Video Games Promoting Mental Health

A Senior Citizen Playing WiiIndividuals dealing with depression, post-traumatic stress disorder or anxiety have been found to find help though video games. Backed up by research in the field of mental health, these psychological conditions have benefited from exposure to a variety of games.

For example, two studies have found exergames to contribute to fighting depression in older adults. Another researcher demonstrates the impact of "hardcore" gamers on the psyche of soldiers, while one company lead by an expert in psychology finds a link between a simple game and reducing social anxiety. Read More...

FWD News: Revisiting the Benefits of Exergaming

Nintendo Wii Fit's Hula Game Generates Significant Health BenefitsFitness games, also known as exergames, have received a lot of attention in the past few years with the introduction of various motion-gaming systems like the Nintendo Wii, Playstation Move and Kinect for Xbox 360. While the effectiveness of these games is debated, researchers have taken a closer look to determine the type of benefits exergames can offer.

In a recent study in Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, researchers from Brigham Young University and the University of Massachusetts, Boston, found that playing active games like Wii Fit or Dance Dance Revolution could reproduce the health benefits of moderate exercise in kids, likened to walking at about 5 km/h (or 3 mph), or more depending on the game played. Read More...

FWD News: Fighting Addiction With Video Games

Khemia from the Vermont Quit Network Helps Smokers Fight Cravings.Addiction treatment experts and their patients are getting some new help from video game technology. Whether it is to kick a smoking habit, control binge eating, fight gambling addiction or curb alcoholism, there’s a game for that. While some are still in the development or research phase, these games are demonstrating great potential in tackling a variety of addictions.

Individuals who are trying to butt out can get assistance to fight craving with a free game called Khemia. This PC game was developed by Hoozinga Game Media for the Vermont Department of Health and is meant to provide a distraction for smokers who suddenly get the urge to light up. The State is attempting to reduce its number of smokers to 11 percent. Read More...