In a surprising article published by Jayne Gackenbach of Grant McEwan University in Edmonton, Alberta, it has been reported that gamers can change their nightmares into interesting, game-like challenges – robbing them of their frightening impact. This could give hope to those who suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder, which can cause terrible nightmares.
Can you imagine if a treatment for PTSD was to just sit and play games for a while? I am all for it, of course, but it does lead to some interesting questions. Would insurance cover game purchases? Which games would actually work for this treatment? One would assume action-based games would be the most effective, but is it possible for puzzle games to work as well if the patient doesn’t like action games? What does this contribute to the debate surrounding violent games? Is it possible that playing these games can actually (gasp) not scar you for life, as many politicians believe?
In a previous study, it was found that gamers are more likely to report that they have lucid dreams. A lucid dream is one where the dream actually comes awake within the dream, and can control the plot, setting, and characters within the dream. It’s also been reported that gamers can exert dream control, meaning that the dreamer can actually control portions of their dream world.