Gamasutra looks at a study from Wheeling Jesuit University in West Virginia which was called Effects of Video Game Play Types on Pain Threshold and Tolerance
The game types most effective in distracting from pain, meted out by cold pressor tests after 10 minutes of each subject playing a particular game type, were the sports and fighting games. They also realized that sports games produced the most anger, and boxing games created the greatest physical response.
“These gaming distractions may be most helpful in children and young adults undergoing painful procedures or suffering from chronic pain, as these individuals comprise the largest gamer demographics,” said director of undergraduate research Dr. Bryan Radenbush.
He concluded: “Physicians could possible implement this in their office to aid in distraction during a painful procedure such as injection or dental work. Video games could also be used in waiting rooms to distract patients from upcoming surgical procedures.” The principle is one of the driving forces behind the annual Child’s Play drive to donate games to children’s hospital wards.