Can video games reduce pain for burn injury victims?

Where a serious burn injury has occurred, negligence is often found. Cases range from ones involving a defective electric blanket to fires that have broken out after a car accident or at a commercial building. In other cases, it isn’t flames that can burn the skin but instead it is chemicals.

However they occur, burn injuries can be some of the most painful injury that one can suffer. Researchers focused on these injuries are constantly seeking better ways to not only treat the physical damage but to manage the pain as well. According to some researchers, video games can help.

Evidence presented at the annual scientific meeting of the American Pain Society in 2010 showed that virtual reality can affect the brain in such a way that patients report a reduced pain level. In the study, patients reported that their pain levels during video games were lowered by approximately 30 to 50 percent.

How can video games help reduce the pain that burn injury patients experience? Part of the pain managing power of video games is the ability that they have to stimulate the brain, actively diverting the focus away from the sense of pain. To aid in the reduction, games also help the brain release endorphins that can have a numbing effect on pain and are linked to contentment and joy.

Virtual reality may help manage pain, but it doesn’t eliminate the often large medical bills that patients must pay for their treatment. For this, victims in San Francisco can seek assistance from a personal injury attorney.

Source: The Huffington Post, “9 Ways Video Games Can Actually Be Good For You,” Drew Guarini, Nov. 7, 2013

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