With advancements in technology and digitalisation, online gaming has grown popular with a variety of games to enjoy – from massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPGs) to first person shooters and more. While gaming can be fun and entertaining, it is also often associated with certain social issues such as addiction and increased violence. These can be prevented if gamers adopt good gaming habits. Practising good gaming habits not only minimises addiction, it also brings about several benefits including improved cognitive abilities, enhanced problem-solving skills and more accurate decision making. Here are some tips on how to adopt good gaming habits!
Online gaming is designed to be immersive and engaging, which is why we do not realise how much time has passed during gaming sessions. As addiction is a common social issue among younger gamers, making it a habit to take breaks in between gaming sessions is crucial in preventing addiction. Ideally, we should be taking 15 to 20 minutes of break time after 50 to 90 minutes of gaming. During this break, gamers are encouraged to walk away from their gaming setup, do some stretches and rest their eyes by closing them or looking out into the distance. For those who tend to lose track of time while gaming, try setting an alarm for all your break sessions before you delve into your fantasy world.
Limit Hours of Play
In recent current affairs, binge gaming has gone up by 13%1 and it is common for some to play games for 6 hours at a stretch. No doubt, gaming makes for a fun experience and takes us away from the stress and worries of everyday life. According to HappyDot.sg’s survey in Singapore, 8 in 10 participants responded that they like to play games.
However, too much gaming can be detrimental. It can disrupt our personal relationships and result in a decline of our physical health from remaining sedentary for long hours. Apart from taking breaks, limiting your play hours or making time for friends and family can help as well. You can start by recording your average game play time per day and seeing how much can be reduced. To make this process easier, shave off gaming time little by little every day, rather than a few hours at one go. Afterall, adopting good gaming habits takes time and is a long-term commitment.
Minimise Blue Light Exposure
Long exposure to blue light can be bad for our eyes. The longer we spend on our screens, the more we expose ourselves to blue light. This blue light emitted from our screens may cause issues such as dry eyes, blurry vision and in more severe cases, cataracts and macular degeneration. Fortunately, many digital devices, whether it is our phones or computers, have modes that help reduce the amount of blue light emitted. With the ‘Night Shift’ setting, you can easily adjust your screen colour to a more orangey hue to minimise blue light emission. Should your device lack this feature, you can also opt for anti blue light glasses to help block out blue light.
Set a Schedule
Last but not least, it is highly advisable to set a gaming schedule to maintain a healthier lifestyle. Even professional esports organisations keep their players on strict schedules to ensure their wellbeing. According to a survey, 76%2 of streamers streamed with a set schedule too! Set aside time for when you can indulge in gaming and time for other responsibilities. Try to keep your schedule as consistent as possible. The best gamer is one who knows how to strike a balance between the virtual and real world.
Apart from entertaining, gaming has brought people together. Everyone from all parts of the world can interact just by entering a game lobby. By practising the above good gaming habits, we can take the gaming experience to a whole new level and enjoy the games we love in a more positive way.
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