Gaming while pregnant is a popular topic.
That is not at all surprising when you consider that almost 50% of gamers are female.
If you are a female gamer and pregnant you may be wondering “Is it safe to play video games while pregnant?”
In this article, we will answer that question, discuss the benefits and risks of playing video games while pregnant, and provide 10 tips for safe gaming during pregnancy.
Keep reading for more information!
Is it safe to play video games while pregnant?
We asked our OB/GYN Dr.Doug Penta, MD this question and he said, Yes, it is safe to play video games while pregnant as long as you follow some simple precautions.
He suggested that pregnant gamers should sit in the most comfortable chair that they can.
If possible put your feet up to help reduce the risk of swelling.
Drink plenty of fluids (consider an electrolyte drink) to prevent dehydration.
Stand up, stretch, and walk around at least every 3 hours.
And stop playing if you feel tired or stressed.
Remember to eat small frequent meals to help keep your energy levels up.
It can be easy to have time slip away when playing your favorite game.
Additionally, If you are playing games on a desktop computer make sure your arms and wrists are supported ergonomically.
The same applies to using a controller or your phone.
Wrist pain caused by overuse or carpal tunnel can be more common during pregnancy.
If you feel any numbness or tingling in your fingers, hands, or arms, you need to take a rest.
If the pain is severe contact your doctor or midwife, you may need to wear a wrist brace while playing.
Avoid looking down at your screen for long periods of time.
This can cause you to develop a forward head posture which can lead to neck pain, muscle tightness in your neck and shoulders, and headaches.
Pregnancy causes many changes to your body that can increase your aches and pains, so remembering to maintain good posture while playing can help you to avoid adding posture problems to the list.
Benefits of playing video games during pregnancy
Playing video games has many potential health benefits.
For pregnant women, playing video games can help improve mental health, motor skills, and problem-solving abilities.
Video games can also help reduce stress and anxiety, which are common during pregnancy.
Additionally, playing video games can improve vision and hand-eye coordination.
Finally, In a recent study results showed that the more often family members played video games together, the closer they were as a family.
Pregnancy can be stressful for couples who are usually trying to balance jobs, bills, and household tasks, so playing a beloved video game together can help you remain connected and close.
Risks of playing video games during pregnancy
Playing video games can be potentially dangerous for pregnant women.
One downside of playing video games is that they can cause eyestrain and fatigue.
Playing video games for an extended period of time can also lead to poor posture, which can cause back pain.
Another potential downside of playing video games is that they can be addictive, and pregnant women may need to be careful not to spend too much time playing them.
These risks can be mitigated with proper planning.
10 tips for safe gaming during pregnancy:
Tip #1: Get the OK from your doctor first
Before you start gaming during pregnancy, it’s important to get the green light from your doctor or midwife.
They will be able to advise you on whether or not it is safe for you to continue playing video games, based on your individual health history and pregnancy.
You can bring it up at your first appointment and they can go over the best ways to game safely throughout your pregnancy.
Tip #2: Choose low-impact games
If you’re going to game while pregnant, it’s important to choose low-impact games.
Avoid any games that involve a lot of physical activity or movement.
Instead, opt for slower-paced games that won’t put too much stress on your body.
It is important to get physical activity during pregnancy and you should get some daily exercise, but that needs to be at a time when you are better able to focus on your surroundings.
During gaming, you are emersed in the game and it would be easy to misstep or move the wrong way and fall or injure yourself.
Tip #3: Take breaks often
When you’re gaming during pregnancy, it’s important to take breaks often.
Get up and walk around for a few minutes every hour or so.
This will help to increase your circulation and prevent you from becoming too tired.
It is easy when engaging in a focused activity like playing video games to lose track of time.
Set an alarm on your phone to remind you to get up and move around.
Tip #4: Drink plenty of water
It’s essential to stay hydrated when you’re gaming while pregnant.
Make sure to drink plenty of water throughout the day, and avoid sugary or caffeinated beverages.
Tip #5: Wear comfortable clothing
When you’re gaming during pregnancy, it’s important to wear comfortable clothing.
Avoid anything that is tight or constricting.
Instead, opt for loose, breathable clothing that won’t put too much pressure on your body.
Dress in layers.
This way you can add or remove a layer of clothing if you get too hot or too cold.
Though we know it is more likely to be hot while game, as gaming systems, computers and monitors throw off a lot of heat.SS
Tip #6: Use a gaming chair
If you’re going to be gaming for long periods of time, it’s a good idea to invest in a comfortable gaming chair.
This will help to support your back and prevent pain or discomfort.
Tip #7: Avoid stressful games
It’s important to avoid stressful games when you’re pregnant.
Stick to games that are relaxing and enjoyable.
This will help to reduce your stress levels and prevent you from becoming too anxious.
Tip #8: Take breaks when you need to
If you start to feel overwhelmed or stressed while gaming, it’s important to take a break.
Step away from the game for a few minutes and take some deep breaths.
This will help to calm your mind and body.
Tip #9: Listen to your body
When you’re gaming during pregnancy, it’s important to listen to your body.
If you start to feel tired, nauseous, or lightheaded, stop gaming and take a break.
It’s also important to eat healthy meals and snacks to keep your energy levels up.
Tip #10: Have fun!
Remember, gaming during pregnancy should be enjoyable.
Choose games that you love and make sure to take breaks when you need to.
Don’t put too much pressure on yourself and enjoy this special time!
We hope that these tips have been helpful.
Healthy gaming snacks during pregnancy:
- Whole-grain crackers with nut butter or peanut butter
- Dry whole-grain cereal
- Bagel and cream cheese
- Pretzels with nut butter or cheese
- Hummus and carrot sticks
- Granola bars
- Apple chips
- Whole apple
- Tzatziki dip and pita bread
- Chicken Salad Sandwich
- Homemade Dried Fruit
Can screen time affect pregnancy?
There’s no doubt that screens are a big part of our lives.
We use them at work, at home, and on the go.
But does all this screen time have an effect on pregnancy?
Some studies have found that spending too much time in front of a screen can lead to certain complications during pregnancy, such as a greater risk of miscarriage, preterm labor, and low birth weight.
However, it’s important to keep in mind that these studies are often small and don’t necessarily show cause and effect.
We do know that living a sedentary lifestyle is not good for our health and spending a lot of time in front of your computer, phone, or TV does lead to being more sedentary.
Being sedentary during pregnancy is not healthy for you or your unborn baby.
If you’re concerned about the potential risks of screen time during pregnancy, talk to your doctor.
It is also possible for too much screen time to impact your ability to sleep.
Getting enough rest is essential during pregnancy.
We recommend that you avoid gaming or watching TV right before your bedtime.
They can help you weigh the pros and cons and make an informed decision about what’s best for you and your baby.
What activities should be avoided during pregnancy?
Pregnancy is an exciting time for expectant parents, but it’s also a time when it’s important to take extra care of your health.
There are a number of activities that should be avoided during pregnancy including
- drinking alcohol,
- using drugs.
Additionally, pregnant women should avoid:
- exposure to harmful chemicals, such as lead or mercury.
Physical activity is generally safe during pregnancy, but there are some types of exercise that should be avoided.
Contact sports, such as
- activities that involve jumping or bouncing can put unnecessary strain on the uprooting ligaments.
Pregnant women should also avoid:
- hot tubs or saunas, as the heat can pose a risk to the developing baby.
There you have it!
It is safe to play video games during pregnancy as long as you get up and move at least every few hours, drink plenty of fluids, stop playing and go rest when you feel fatigued or stressed.