Grotesque model reveals what avid gamers could look like in 20 years' time thanks to hours playing – Daily Mail

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He’s got bloodshot eyes, a dented skull and blistered hands — and in twenty years, you’ll be just like him if you don’t take care of yourself when gaming, experts warn. 
‘Michael’ — the pallid and hunchbacked video game player of the future — is a grotesque model that shows how hunching over consoles might affect avid gamers.
This cautionary vision was cooked up by researchers based on globally-sourced reports on the physical impacts of the gamer lifestyle.

The team propose a number of strategies for gamers to take better care of themselves — including regular stretching, eating well and staying hydrated.
Coronavirus self-isolation has led to a boom in online gaming, with gamers spending almost 19 per cent more time on average playing, experts report.
Despite opposition from academics and the industry, the World Health Organization now recognises video game ‘addiction’ as an official psychological disorder. 
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He’s got bloodshot eyes, a dented skull and blistered hands — and in twenty years, you’ll be just like him if you don’t take care of yourself when gaming, experts warn. ‘Michael’ — the pallid and hunchbacked video game player of the future — is a grotesque model that shows how hunching over consoles might affect avid gamers
According to the researchers, there are a number of steps gamers can take to avoid ending up like poor Michael: 
1. Exercise and stretch regularly
2. Prevent eye strain with breaks
3. Eat a healthy diet
4. Sit properly in a good chair
5. Keep hydrated 
‘Everyone meet Michael, a visual representation of the future gamer,’ said a spokesperson for OnlineCasino.ca, the Canadian site who undertook the study.
The research, they added, ‘predicted how avid gamers could look in the next twenty years if they didn’t change their lifestyle habits.’
‘From sleep deprivation and dehydration, to lack of vitamin D, digital eye strain and “PlayStation thumb” — these are just some of the physical implications of spending hours online, in a gaming chair, away from sunlight and physical activity.’
To design Michael, researchers reviewed reports by such organisations at the National Health Service, the World Health Organisation, the National Geographic and UK interactive entertainment on the potential effects of the gamer lifestyle.
This included the physical impacts on the human body — including muscles, skin, eyes and hair — of remaining indoors, staying seated in a chair and spending excessive amounts of time staring at a computer screen.
Using this information, the team then worked with with animators and artists to create Michael – a visual representation of a  future gamer.
A poor diet and too much time out of the sun and under artificial light has given him pale and pasty skin from not getting enough Vitamin D and B-12.
His back is now permanently bent from his poor gaming posture and he has stress-related eczema across his legs and arms. 
The full findings of the study were published on the OnlineCasino.ca website
To design Michael, researchers reviewed reports by such organisations at the National Health Service, the World Health Organisation, the National Geographic and UK interactive entertainment on the potential effects of the gamer lifestyle
Michael — the gamer of the future — suffers from various health issues, which include: 
Bloodshot eyes aka ‘digital eye strain’
Consistent, light pressure built up over a number of years could cause an indent in the hair, skin and skull if stressed long enough. This means that overuse of headsets during game-play over twenty years could cause deformation.
‘PlayStation Thumb’ & Blistered Fingertips
Known as ‘PlayStation Thumb’, Onycholysis is a nail disorder caused by repetitive trauma such as tapping fingernails on a keyboard or controller, causing the fingernail to loosen from its nail bed. These repetitive motions from can also induce pain from muscle stiffness and blisters in the fingertips from overuse.
‘Nintendo Arthritis’
Nintendo Arthritis aka ‘Nintendinitis’ is a new type of repetitive strain injury that causes ulceration and calluses on the hands. If these are intertwined with key nerves as they develop, they will not be able to be surgically removed.
Trigger finger
Trigger finger, sometimes known as ‘Gamers Thumb’, is a term given when you put a strain on the tendons in your thumb or ring finger for long periods of time. This causes them to become so inflamed from gaming that you suffer pain, limited movement and a locking sensation when trying to straighten or bend your finger.
Carpal tunnel syndrome 
Carpal tunnel syndrome is a condition caused by repetitive motion and overuse of a computer mouse and keyboard. This compresses the carpal tunnel, causing nerve and weakness to the palmar abduction. This causes a burning sensation in the fingers and thumb as well as sharp pains in the arm and shoulder. If such is not treated in time this can lead to numbness and eventually tumours on the wrists — with amputation the only treatment.
Hunchback & rounded shoulders 
A condition that slowly develops over time, a hyper-extended neck, rounded shoulders and hunchback will start as an occasional dull pain and work its way from neck to hands and back as the strain slowly creates a bend in the neck. Such is caused by lengthy periods of time sitting in uncomfortable positions without either stretching or counteracting with regular exercise.
Hair loss
Vitamin D is essential to health, but because it is absorbed mostly from exposure to the sun (as well as certain foods) Michael lacking in it. This leads to hair loss, with new hair growth stunted. 
Indent in skull
Consistent, light pressure built up over a number of years could cause an indent in the hair, skin and skull if stressed long enough. This means that overuse of headsets during game-play over twenty years could cause deformation. 
Hairy ears
Due to poor air quality and a lack of circulation, more hair is likely to grow around the ears. This is a defence mechanism the body creates to protect itself from dirt and debris it no longer feels is being removed. 
Muscular stiffness 
Staying tense in these uncomfortable positions for extended periods of time can cause pain in the shoulders. Excessive gaming and sleep deprivation lead to raised and tense shoulders, which over time can develop into a repetitive strain injury.
Obesity 
With intense periods of gaming, nutrition is the first thing to go out of the window. Not only is one idle for long periods of time, but the temptation to give in to quick, easy and calorific junk food can be high.
Eczema 
Red, inflamed skin can flare up due to triggered foods, dry air and stress. During intense gaming sessions, when continual stress can occur, the body releases a hormone called cortisol which can increase inflammation throughout the body and cause an eczema flare-up.
Pale skin
Lacking in Vitamin D and B-12 due to lack of sunlight and consuming too much junk food means our future gamer has pasty skin. A symptom of B-12 deficiency, pale skin is caused by the reduction of red blood cells.
Varicose veins
These can form when you remain in the same position for prolonged periods of time. This causes valves of your veins not to function properly, allowing blood to leak and flow backwards, causing the blood to collect and swell.
Swollen ankles
These occur as a product of sitting for long periods of time. When inactive, muscles cannot pump fluid back towards the heart, so fluid and blood retains around the ankles causing swelling and discomfort.
SOURCE: OnlineCasino.ca
This included the physical impacts on the human body — including muscles, skin, eyes and hair — of remaining indoors, staying seated in a chair and spending excessive amounts of time staring at a computer screen. Pictured, Michael has bloodshot eyes and a pallid complexion
Known as ‘PlayStation Thumb’, Onycholysis is a nail disorder caused by repetitive trauma such as tapping fingernails on a keyboard or controller causes the fingernail to loosen from its nail bed. These repetitive motions from game playing can also induce pain from muscle stiffness and blisters in the fingertips from overuse
Michael is the spiritual successor to Emma — the sickly work colleague of the future — who was built last year to highlight the importance of good workplace conditions. 
Emma was cooked up by researchers after interviews with more than 3,000 employees about their health issues and concerns. 
She has a permanently hunched posture sitting for hours every day over her desk, dry red eyes from prolonged exposure to a computer screen and sallow skin for spending years trapped under the glare of artificial light. 
Michael is the spiritual successor to Emma, pictured — the sickly work colleague of the future — who was built last year to highlight the importance of good workplace conditions
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