A new study from the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine has given us yet another reason to invest our precious time in playing Nintendo Wii. Researchers found that the use of 'exergames' significantly improves the mood and mental state of older adults who suffer from subsyndromal depression, a form of mild depression common amongst seniors.
As Dr. Dilip V. Jeste, professor of psychiatry and neurosciences at UCSD School of Medicine as well as the head of the study, explains "older adults with depression may be at particular risk for diminished enjoyment of physical activity, and therefore, more likely to stop exercise programs prematurely."
The study had 19 senior citizens with subsyndromal depression play Nintendo Wii Sports (their choice of tennis, bowling, baseball, golf, or boxing) for 35-minutes a day, three times a week. The results are pretty promising: about a third of the participants had a 50% reduction of depression symptoms, coinciding with an increase in mental health-related quality of life and cognitive improvements.
This is not to suggest that if you are a senior suffering from depression, you need to purchase a Wii to achieve a state of happiness. The equation is a bit more simple than that: an active healthy lifestyle can curb depression and increase your general daily disposition. And it's good to know a Wii can help you get there.
Sports Games Can Reduce Depression in Seniors
- (The Times of India)