The video games industry is one of the fastest-growing industries in today’s world. And it might sound harmless at first. But they pose serious EMF threats that one should know about. Here’s the dark side of gaming.
Gaming includes many electrical components all of which emit EMF. Some even give radio frequency as well. The individual amount might seem negligible, but the combined amount and prolonged gaming periods can contribute to many unwanted conditions.
There is a lot to know about the dark side of gaming. In this article, I will break down how EMF and blue light are tangled with gaming. I will also discuss their harmful effects on the human body. So, keep on reading till the end for a complete knowledge on the topic.
Video Game Components and Related EMF Concerns
As we all know, electricity running through a circuit gives off EMF radiation. Video gaming is all about electrical components. Moreover, a gamer is exposed to multiple electrical devices at the same time when gaming.
Video gaming usually comprises two major components, a computer or a gaming console where the game runs and a screen. The screen can be a monitor, a TV or a projector. Also, there are additional components. In the following, I will discuss the EMF effects of every device related to video gaming. Let’s start:
A desktop computer consists of various parts. A central processing unit sits on the motherboard. Ram, storage unit, graphics card and all the other parts are connected to the motherboard. The motherboard gets its power from a power supply unit and supplies the necessary power to every part attached to it.
As you can already understand, a desktop computer is a storehouse of electricity. So, it only makes sense that it will give off a hefty amount of EMF radiation. Studies show that at a distance of 60 cm, the exposure is 30 milligauss which is way higher than safe levels.
Besides desktops, laptop computers have become a popular medium of gaming these days. Many powerful laptops go toe to toe with high-end desktop computers. Due to the massive amount of power packed in such a small package, the EMF risk is also higher.
Laptop’s bottom surface emits radiation of 50mG to 150mG. Why are we talking about the bottom panel here? It is because laptops are often used on our laps where our reproductive system is located.
The recommended level of EMF in a home is below 1mG. You can see the intensity of laptop radiation. A smaller area of the body absorbs the radiation which makes it even more dangerous.
- Gaming Console
More than 50% of gamers around the world use gaming consoles like PlayStation, Xbox and handheld consoles like Nintendo. Since they all run on electricity, it is no surprise that EMF radiation would be a part of them.
All consoles emit EMF radiation in small amounts. But here’s the thing, gamers don’t game for just an hour or two. They sit in front of the console for hours after hours at a stretch. And they also sit fairly close to the system. So, there is continued exposure at a close proximity. This increases the risks of EMF induced effects on the body.
Gaming consoles also emit radiofrequency since they are connected to a Wi-Fi network for online gaming. Most desktop computers get internet connection via ethernet cable whereas consoles depend on Wi-Fi connectivity. This is because of the placement of gaming consoles.
A screen can be standalone or attached to the console, depending on the type. Handheld consoles and laptops come with a built-in screen. Desktop computers and consoles use separate screens which can be a monitor or a television.
Besides EMF, TV screens also emit blue light which is harmful to the human body. LCD televisions were the first iteration of flat screened TV. LCD screens are manufactured using fluorescent technology. They emit some EMF radiation. But that is not significant since we watch TV from a distance.
Smart TVs emit more EMF radiation than LCD and LED TVs. It is because of the technology and their connectivity. Smart TVs can connect to the internet and you can browse YouTube or Facebook through it. You can connect Wi-Fi supported devices to it such as your phone or wireless headset.
So, smart televisions always emit two types of radiation; radio frequency and EMF. So, this makes them more harmful than normal LCD or LED televisions.
These are the safest screens that you can avail today. Computer monitors use less electricity than televisions. Also, there is no such thing as a smart monitor which means no monitor uses Wi-Fi connectivity. That leaves only one type of radiation in computer monitors, which is also very low.
Monitors and televisions both emit a considerable amount of blue light. Prolonged exposure can cause harmful effects on the body. Since video gaming is sort of binging, every gamer is vulnerable to such effects.
The human eye absorbs blue light quite well which is not a good thing. Blue lights can cause dry eyes, eye pain, blurry vision etc. It can also lead to age-related macular degeneration, cataract and even permanent blindness.
- Wireless Components
Gaming involves many components other than the computer or console and the screen. There is also Keyboard, mouse, controller, gaming headset, mic, Wi-Fi router etc. The scary part is that almost all of these components are wireless these days. Controllers in consoles are 100% wireless. Mouse and headset have also gone wireless and gamers use them extensively.
There are even mouse pads that can charge a wireless mouse. All these wireless devices contribute significantly to the EMF exposure of an individual. Wi-Fi router is always present because of ever so increasing popularity of online gaming.
The point is that these gadgets emit a negligible amount of radiation but their combined EMF emission pairing with prolonged exposure is a matter of health concern.
Harmful Effects of Gaming on the Human Body
Video games are meant to be fun as long as you don’t overdo it. And that’s exactly what gamers do these days. Game developers make games in such a way so that you become addicted to them and want to keep playing.
Video games were once known for improving mechanical skill, cognitive sense and reflexes in an individual. But recently, it is doing more harm than good. Here are some harmful effects of video games on the human body:
Video games are all about brains. The entire time you play games, your brain goes through complex neurological processes. A study in 2017 shows that playing the first-person shooter can cause a reduction of grey matter in the brain. This can cause depression and PTSD.
Gamers usually start gaming at a very young age. Constant reduction of grey matter in the hippocampus can ultimately lead to Alzheimer’s disease in old age. Gaming can also cause irritability and restlessness, especially in young people. Other effects can include fatigue, sleep deprivation, headache etc.
Using a falsely designed mouse or controller can lead to carpal tunnel syndrome. That’s why many manufacturers focus on developing ergonomically shaped accessories.
Digital eye strain or computer vision syndrome is a group of eye-related problems. You can tell from the name that sitting in front of a computer screen contributes to these problems. The problems include dry eyes, watery eyes, blurry vision, eye pain etc.
Computer screen emits blue light which is the principal cause of these problems. Besides the ones mentioned above, additional symptoms can be development of cataract, damage to the retina and specific membranes etc.
Gaming can also accelerate age-related macular degeneration. This completely damages the retina and results in loss of vision. Age-related macular degeneration is the leading cause of blindness in old age. Prolonged periods of gaming can speed up this process.
EMF has many other harmful effects on our body. One of the most worth mentioning effects is the sleep disturbance that can lead to insomnia.
This can lead to a lack of concentration and difficulty remembering. Constant tiredness can also occur. Infertility, cancer, and tumors are also matters of concern.
How Can you Lower the Harmful Effects of Video Gaming?
While all the harms of video gaming sound ominous, there are ways you can mitigate the effects. Here are some ways to reduce the harmful effects of video gaming:
- Reduce Gaming Time
As you have already realized, prolonged exposure to EMF is more harmful. We recommend playing games for not more than two hours. Always finish gaming at least two hours before bedtime.
If you intend to play games for longer periods, take a break of fifteen minutes after every one hour. There is another method of taking breaks which is after every twenty minutes, look at something twenty feet away for at least twenty seconds.
- Maintain Distance
Distance is another factor that can lower the effects of EMF by a great margin. Sit at least one foot away from the screen.
Also maintain distance from other components such as Wi-Fi router, sound system etc. Keep the gaming console away if possible.
In the case of laptops, you can put them on EMF shields so the radiation is blocked and does not enter your body.
- Wired Gaming Components
Wireless products emit more radiation than their wired counterparts, both in terms of EMF radiation and radiofrequency. It is concerning how everything is changing to wireless so fast. If you want to reduce the harmful effects of EMF, we suggest you stick to wired components. They are cheaper and long-lasting. They also need less cost to maintain.
I also suggest using a wired internet connection. If your house has a wired connection, plug in the cable directly to the ethernet port of your console or computer. Thus, there will be one wireless device to worry about. There will also be significantly less latency in online games thanks to the wired connection.
Air tube headphones are an amazing invention in this battle against EMF. In this type of headphones, a hollow air tube replaces the wire of a traditional headphone. The sound travels through the air to your ear. You get flawless sound without the risk of EMF exposure.
Docooler anti-radiation headphone can be an excellent choice. It is durable and high-quality thanks to the aluminium alloy build. It has a very unique design and is comfortable to wear.
- Blue Light Protecting the Screen
If you are particularly concerned about the effects of blue lights, you can overcome that by sitting at a distance and lowering your game-time. For further protection, you can use an anti-blue light screen.
It is a transparent screen that you set in front of the TV or monitor screen. It doesn’t affect the visual quality of the game but blocks the harmful blue light. The image might seem slightly less bright but you will get used to it.
You can use the Anti Blue Light Screen Protector by EZPro. It’s easy to apply and remove. It comes in three different sizes. EZPro blue light screen protector also protects your screen from scratch.
- Disconnect the Device Completely
When signing out for the rest of the night, completely shut down the entire gaming system. Some machines give off some form of radiation when connected to a power source. so, detach all the wires if possible. Another thing you can do is keep your gaming room completely separate.
While there is no concrete evidence to say that EMF exposure will certainly cause a certain condition to occur, there isn’t any evidence to deny it either. The effects of EMF and blue light aren’t guaranteed, but avoiding them guarantees some degree of remission.
I hope you now realize the dreadful effects of gaming and have learned how to overcome them. The protective measures I’ve talked about should be enough to minimize the harmful effects of EMF and blue light on your body. Ending here wishing you the best health, farewell.