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When you think about someone suffering from headaches, you may think of an adult. However, research shows that an increasing number of children and teenagers experience chronic headaches. According to the National Headache Foundation, about 60% of children, adolescents, and teenagers suffer from occasional headaches.
The majority of teenagers or college students get headaches, and many suffer on a recurrent basis. About one-third of children experience headaches from time to time before entering their teenage. Children and teens miss more than one million days of school and college each year due to severe headaches.
Studies highlight that children and adults who play video games are more prone to developing motion sickness, including symptoms like nausea, dizziness, headaches, sweating, and stress. Loud noise, intense graphics, and blue light from the computer screen or TV connected to the video game console can damage eyes and cause headaches.
Do Video Games Cause Headaches?
Parents should know that certain conditions such as headaches and digestive problems are a normal part of childhood and adolescence. These are common complaints that health professionals see with children, teenagers, and young adults. The two major types of headaches caused by video games are:
Tension headaches are the most type of headache caused by video games. When you play a video game for a long time, the HD graphics, loud noise, and blue light from the TV screen can cause symptoms like a tight band around your head.
Although the pain is usually dull, you will experience aches on both sides of your head. Some people also experience aches in the front and back of their heads. There are numerous causes of tension headaches, such as:
Blue light emitted from the TV screen can disrupt sleep, preventing you from getting a good night’s sleep and waking up fresh in the morning. Too much exposure to blue light can cause stress and fatigue during the daytime, leading to tension headaches.
Loud noises and music from video games, such as first-person shooter games, can trigger tension headaches. Another reason is excessive screen-watching, even if you don’t play a video game. For example, if your friend plays a video game and you watch it on the screen for a prolonged period, you will develop symptoms of tension headaches.
Treatment for these types of headaches includes limiting video games and screen time. Likewise, encourage yourself and your children to change dietary and sleep habits. You can also take over-the-counter (OTC) drugs, such as ibuprofen, naproxen, or acetaminophen to relieve tension headaches.
However, these medications can cause side effects like nausea, digestive issues, vomiting, nervousness, and stress. So, the best solution to mitigate the effects of blue light from the TV screens or playing video games is to wear blue-light-blocking glasses. These glasses block harmful wavelengths of blue light and reduce the risk of tension headaches.
Migraine is the second type of headache caused by too much screen time, such as watching TV or playing video games on your console or smartphone. Migraines are characterized by shooting and throbbing pain on the front or one side of your head. However, it also moves from side to side occasionally.
Migraines can frequently cause you to feel dizzy, lightheaded, and nauseous. Some children and young adults may experience unusual smells, see spots, or become overly sensitive to bright lights and loud noises. Research studies highlight that migraines can run in families.
Some studies highlight that stress, depression, and anxiety can also cause migraines. Playing shooting games or those that promote violence is harmful to children and teenagers, causing severe stress and depressive episodes, leading to migraine headaches.
Parents should watch for signs of stress, depression, changes in sleeping habits, declining performance at school, and difficulty concentrating. If your child experiences any of the above symptoms, you must take him to the doctor for a diagnosis. Your child might be suffering from migraines due to too much screen time or video games.
Although some video games are excellent learning sources for children, allowing them to learn history, arts, culture, or modern technology. However, the blue light emitted from the screen and the loud noises from violent games like Grand Theft Auto can affect your child’s mental health.
Not only do video games cause headaches and migraines, but they also increase addiction rates in children and teenagers. That’s why parents must limit their children’s video game playing time and focus on other protective measures, such as blue light glasses.
Why Wear Blue Light Glasses?
Average daily screen time and video game playing time are growing. About four in five teenagers and adults complain of digital eye strain, headaches, and poor sleep patterns. These conditions directly result from extended video game playing, smartphone usage, and prolonged exposure to blue light with higher energy levels and shorter wavelengths.
Research studies show that endorphins are hormones released by your brain to reduce aches and pain in different parts of the body. These are natural painkillers of your body and play a crucial role in relieving headaches. However, too much exposure to blue light emitted from the screen while playing video games can reduce endorphin levels.
As a result, you experience frequent headaches that eventually turn into a chronic condition with other symptoms, such as mood changes, stress, depression, food cravings, dry eyes, irritation, redness, macular degeneration, etc. Blue light glasses can block higher energy radiation of the visible light, preventing eye damage and headaches.
Moreover, these glasses maintain an adequate neuronal balance in the brain, allowing normal melatonin, endorphins, serotonin, and dopamine production. Sufficient production of endorphins can repel headaches, including tension headaches and migraines. That’s why we recommend investing in quality yellow-tinted glasses.
Headaches are a common condition experienced by everyone from time to time during their lives. There are many causes of headaches, such as stress, smoking, alcohol consumption, lack of physical activity, too much screen time, and playing video games for a prolonged period with wearing blue light glasses.