back to article Gadgets give granny disease to kids

Youngsters are increasingly suffering from arthritis-like pains due to their excessive use of games consoles and mobile phones, it has been claimed. The revelation came from the European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR), which holds its annual conference in London this week. Consultants reckon roughly 90 per cent of British …


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  1. Ru

    Won't someone blame the parents?

    7 hours a day on a console? Wow. The issue isn't that computer games and associated peripherals mangle you for life, its that parents who take no responsibility for their children are guilty of damaging their children's health. The obvious solution is of course government regulation of games, consoles and phones, right?

  2. Adam T

    Say a little prayer...

    ...for sufferers of mouse-induced injuries. I've more than one friend with carpel-tunnel which they ascribe to intensive mouse clicking.

    Anyway what can you do? Evolution will take care of it. It may take a million years to show, but one day we won't need hands, just bigger hats.

  3. Nigel Brown

    Etcetera etcetera etcetera

    Another argument against electronic babysitters.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Practice your hand writing

    Video Games is a lame excuse.

  5. Colin Millar

    The stupid - it hurts

    That's all

  6. Graham Dresch

    Protests in the street ?

    Are we about to see street protests between placard - waving supporters of The Arthritis Defense League and the European League Against Rheumatism

    1. Jedit Silver badge

      I doubt it

      You really don't want to be waving placards for hours when you have arthritis or the rheumatizz.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    So nothing to do with changing diets?

    But also yeah I don't deny button bashing can be an issue if you spam a game for hours upon hours for weeks on end, but do I need 6 hours of fucking advisory messages before I play my game? No thanks, don't care. Every now and again I read the advisory on the front page of a game to kill a few seconds on the bus, and it's just bollocks, sit in a well lit room blah distance from screen in an up right positiong - oh get bent I'll play laying in bed with a coffee precariously perched on the side board or a foot away from the screen on a desk at 5am in the morning whilst thinking "just one more turn" with the lights off. Play through the drowsiness and the pain ooo yeah.

    Then again I've reached the point where if a modern game entertains me for more than five hours it's something special (total war series, the first fear game, civ, counter strike) LA Noire looks good but I don't have an x-box le sigh.

    My fingers though are nowhere near as damaged as my knees are, and i don't use those to play games lol (and they've been bad since I was a teenager when I was still a highly active sort of person).

  8. CADmonkey

    This is why I bought an acoustic guitar

    Banging out a few chords after a long shift, I think of it as an aerobic work out for my fingers and it's a great stress reliever too. It doesn't matter that I'm not very good!

    I've been a full time CAD operator for about 15 years now. I realised early on that my livelihood depended on my hands and my eyes remaining in good condition and so were worth taking care of. (As well as the guitar for my hands, I use the Bates eye method quite a lot - similar effect).

    And a LOT of keyboard shortcuts instead of mouse clicks.

  9. The Fuzzy Wotnot

    Argghh! Panic!!

    Parents are screwing up their kids...again!

    The Nanny state needs to step-in and save the wee ones...again!

    Video games blamed for world's evil...again!

    The European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR) needs some free, ignore that one!

    Kids will die! KIDS WILL BE HARMED! Don't you understand?!?! Arghhh!

    1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
      Big Brother

      Yes, of course.

      A little stint in a local Balilla will put some starch into the collars of those idle youngsters.

  10. Reading Your E-mail

    Good idea

    Whilst you're at it also add a warning to video games for the following:

    Not bang your head against the wall

    Not to try to swallow the game packaging

    Not to try to blow your head off with the light gun

    Not punch yourself in the head

    Not to try to stuff ferrets down you trousers whilst playing the game

    and anything else that sounds completely frickin obvious......

    </walks away wondering when people will start using common sense again rather than needing someone else to tell them when to stop dribbling>

  11. stucs201
    Thumb Down

    Yes too much button bashing hurts

    But so does holding a pencil/pen/crayon for too long. Better ban colouring books too.

  12. Wizard
    Thumb Up

    I am now a chronic RSI sufferer

    Rome: Total War was what tipped me over the edge. As a software engineer in the day and a gamer in the evening, I was fine until I wasn't. That is the problem, I cannot get rid of it now and can't use a mouse. Almost constant low pain which can make you feel sick. People do need to be warned about what they are storing up for their kids and make sure they don't use the computer too much. On the industry side, hopefully some of the great developments around alternative inputs and voice recognition will start to take hold in the next few years.

    1. Connor

      Dude, you've scared me....

      You were kidding though right? I had blinding headaches, vision problems, insomnia and sore arthritic like hands playing Fallout 3, once I completed it though, they all went away. I've always assumed that such things were temporary, like game burn, and disappear after a few days of non-gaming?

      Incidentally I've recently blown the dust off Rome Total War and been playing it again; I'd forgotten how addictive and how long that game was and started getting all the above all over again (with neck pain thrown in) and after reading your comment I am thinking, is it worth it?

    2. John H Woods

      Have you tried a different keyboard...

      ... and a mouse replacement? I developed RSI 20 years ago and although it is still occasionally a problem I have found that avoiding mice (e.g. by using a nipple, a tablet, a touchpad or a head pointer) and using a Dvorak keyboard I have managed to get it under control. Anecdotal, sure, but you could give it a go and see if it helps. Very best wishes for your recovery.

  13. eWill

    Mandated Ergonomics?

    Surely the solution is to ensure that games controllers etc are ergonomic and joint health friendly. It amazes me that this is beyond the wit of the designers.

    I modded my xbox controller my self with some self hardening rubber plastic stuff, not perfect but way better.

  14. anarchic-teapot

    There are 100 types of arthritis

    It just means "inflamed joints". Which one are they talking about here?

    Lay off the "granny disease" too. While people are certainly more prone to developing stiff and painful joints with age, it's not exclusive to the elderly. I've known children that had rheumatoid arthritis (an autoimmune disease), and I developped osteoarthritis (due to worn cartilage) in my 20s due to being dealt a lousy hand at gene poker.

    The subject might have been of interest with a link to the original article, rather than the alarmist crap the Sun deals out.

    I found this one about a study in 2009:

    Me, I find the Wii can help with stiff joints, but then again I tend to go for gentler games and I don't play every day for 2 hours at a stretch.

  15. Bunglebear
    Thumb Down

    Rheumatism? Folk medicine

    The term rheumatism hasn't been used in decades by the medical profession, which raises some concern about the medical qualifications of those involved in EULAR. Unless there is an underlying genetic or autoimmune condition it is mostly likely RSI giving the kiddies the joints of an 80 year old.

    Saying that, RSI (and carpal tunnel) is no joke. My trashed thumbs can't use in a console controller at all now, just as well I only game on the PC.

  16. Puck

    I have RSI too

    i was doing financial admin (computers) during day, web browsing during eve, haven't worked a day in two years. my rheumatologist thinks it's more likely fibromyalgia (which they say is basically a chemical reaction to excessive 'socioeconomic anxiety', tipping the body into overamplifying pain signals badly), but when i was doing the repetitive work, that was a bit of a problem itself, i'm sure.

    The charity RSI Action have observed there is NO research being done into RSI whatsoever, and they are campaigning for this to happen - they need all the support they can get. So do lend your voice if this is an issue which you are concerned about.

    The T800 for obvious reasons.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Ambiguous cause

    Maybe their pain is due to another popular entertaining activity making heavy use of rapid wrist movements.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    in the good old days

    of console/home computer gaming, the poor quality of the 60htz crt tv's they were connected to meant that you got crippling headaches long before your joints started complaining.

    now we have shiny, flicker free, lcd tv's people are comfortable staring at them for much longer!

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