As Pokémon GO has begun to roll out across the world, some fans are reporting that the smartphone app has already had a positive effect on their mental health.
Of course the key hook to Pokémon Go is going outdoors to catch Pokémon in the real world. According to a recent study it was found that women who walked 200 minutes a week had more energy, felt better emotionally, socialised more and were not as limited by their depression when researchers checked in with them again after three years.
Twitter is awash with people's real life experiences with using Pokémon GO outdoors and it seems to help affirm the findings of this study, at least anecdotally.
Here are just a small handful of examples which we've seen:
Of course someone has to take it a bit too far...
Have you experienced any positive mental health benefits from using Pokémon GO in your experience or do you think this is all a bit Farfetch'd? (Sorry.)
Be sure to let us know with a comment below.
I could believe it. Depression is cured by a range of things including a lack of fresh air, socialization and exercise. With a motive to go outside to catch Pokémon, this game acts as a distraction and an aid to depression as you are busy playing a game
I'd say it would ruin mine.
@SLIGEACH_EIRE Yes we know we know already thanks
The health benefits are obvious. Anything that gets someone outside and socializing in a healthy productive way is a good thing. My daughter and I walked over 2 miles yesterday.
On the other hand the glitching and freezing plus the effect this game has on my phone's battery is not healthy for my mental attitude.
I can see it. I haven't had my medication in weeks so....hurry up I guess?
I would if I could actually log in!
@SLIGEACH_EIRE Why do you hate Pokemon? In general, I mean.
The game does make me go outside more, mostly because my house is full of Drowzee....Drowzee is so creepy!
#PokemonGO actually made me want to play a Pokemon game.
Pokemon Go makes me want to play Yokai Watch.
Well, apparently it can also seriously damage your mental health...
I'm afraid that anecdotal evidence such as these tweets would not be considered scientific proof of the concept. Moreover, it pushes the incorrect and dismissive idea that "if people just...they wouldn't be so ..." (insert your own judgements about mental health). I know from working with people every day/night, that it just doesn't work like that. Treatment has to be holistic and consider the entirety of a person's life. Still great for those who have found a mental lift from the deflating realities of everyday life. There's no doubt that active and new experiences in the environment can lift mood and contribute to a mentally healthy lifestyle
Not for me. I feel uncomfortable using my phone in front of other people. Using it to look around for pokemen would make me even more anxious.
It's imrpoving mental health as much as booze. You may feel when under influence that depression is gone/not as bad, but it will come back sooner or later, because it's only a distraction. Wasn't there a word for it anyway like escapism or somerhing, so keks can stop with "it heals"?
Pokemon GO improved my sex life. My gf and I are finding amazing secret spots... so don't go looking for squirtle....
@BensonUii Well said!
Nintendo Life reports dopamine while Gizmodo reports sore legs.
Update: I heard the joke recently that it took Michelle Obama eight years to get the US exercising, but Pokemon Go did it in 24 hours.
People really need to get out more. What is happening to the world.
I am currently loving this game!
Welcome to Brazil, a third world's patch of land where going out with your cellphone automatically makes you get it stolen.
I guess I won't be able to enjoy it as much as if I lived somewhere else.
Pokemon GO: Improving physical and mental health, one step at a time.
This is music to my ears. As someone who has trouble interacting with other people myself I can second that Pokemon has helped me get out of my bubble.
Well now I'm at least looking less pasty then Shulk
I have been suffering from Anxiety the last two years and I have to say I have been out walking a heap since I have gotten Pokemon Go and I have felt the best I have felt in ages! I look forward to playing Pokemon Go and going outside with it. It's a fun way to relax and take yourself into another world for a few hours! I am also super excited when talking to people about it!
That's a horrible comparison. Booze is not a distraction, it's self medication. Most people actually get more depressed because of the after effects a night drinking then spending another night being miserable sealed off from others.
Distractions are a key component of mental health treatment because you never get "cured". They let someone survive until their emotions are under control so they can get proper treatment.
Something like drinking/std risk behavior makes the situation much worse.
Physical activity alone is part of most therapy for depression and anxiety.
So you say horrbile comparison, and then repeat after me. Indeed horrible.
"Physical activity alone is part of most therapy for depression"
I would not say that, because it can end up as complete bs. I would rather say dependent on country. I don't know about US for sure, but in EU in some countries most treatments are pills and not activity.
I prefer to just do public community service to improve my mental health, and go exploring by foot and bike for physical exercise around the neighborhoods and woods in this area, but to each their own, I suppose... I don't need a game or a phone to tell me to do those things. And I've suffered from depression and anxiety before, too.
@Dave24 @SetupDisk Physical exercise and exploring nature sure helps my psyche... A skilled acupuncturist can also help release the nerves nicely.
@ThanosReXXX Well, at least this may have brought the deceased person's family some closure. If there's anything that destroys the mind, it's not knowing what happened to a missing loved one. (I hope they were loved by someone at some point...)
@PlywoodStick Oh, I agree. The weird thing is that a similar event occurred over here as well...
Now what are the odds of that happening?
@Dave24 you ever use the google? Try typing in "does physical exercise improve mental health"
My goodness you are dense. You said booze was the same thing as physical activity. I don't care that you are ignorant but spreading your ignorance is disgusting.
Plus you most only see what you want to see as I stated that physical activity is part of most therapy for depression and anxiety. That is not just using it as a distraction.
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