Video games are extremely popular among children of all ages, especially among younger children. Due to the rapid advancement of technology, it is expected to continue to grow even further. Video games are a popular source of entertainment for both children and adults. They engage in these activities whenever they are bored or wish to take a brief break from their work or studies.
Individuals report feeling much more relaxed after playing these games, which aim to alter their state of mind and mood. Because of the ever-increasing demand for video games, scientists have conducted research to determine the effects of video games on human brains.
Positive Effects of Video Games
A slew of studies has looked into the advantages and disadvantages of video gaming. Here are just a few examples of those who have discovered that video games offer distinct advantages to their players.
Changes in the brain as a result of video games
It has been discovered that playing video games can cause changes in a variety of brain regions. According to research, video games cause some structural changes in the brain, as well as changes in brain functionality and behavior in a variety of ways.
- Draw more attention to yourself.
When we are playing a game, we must maintain our concentration and attention otherwise we will lose. Human attention has improved as a result of video games, with selective attention and sustained concentration among the most notable improvements in human attention. Moreover, when comparing gamers and non-gamers, the attention-seeking regions of the brain are more efficient in gamers, and they require less activation to maintain concentration on a variety of tasks.
- The dimensions of the brain
According to research, playing video games increases the size and competence of brain regions responsible for visuospatial skills, as well as the size and competence of the rest of the brain (ability to identify visual and spatial relationships among objects). Long-term gamers who have adhered to a game training regimen have seen an increase in the size of their right hippocampus.
- Addicts of video games
A number of structural and functional changes have occurred in the neural reward system of gamers who have become addicted to their gaming devices (a group of structures associated with feeling pleasure, motivation, and learning). Any game-related signals or signs that we expose these addicts to cause cravings in them, while also monitoring their brain responses, which we call “gaming addiction.”
- It can assist you in improving your memory.
Individuals can even benefit from playing brain training games by improving the formation of their memories. Furthermore, it contributes to the improvement of the two other significant cognitive areas, working memory and sustained attention, as well. These abilities are retained for a period of six months following the completion of training.
- A decrease in the number of brain-related diseases.
When we talk about diseases, we all want to live a disease-free life, and this is something that everyone wants. What if it is possible to accomplish this with the assistance of a video game?
To be sure, research has shown that strategy-based games can help seniors maintain or improve their cognitive function while also providing some protection against Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. Additionally, a small amount of brain training can assist in reversing some of the effects of age-related brain decline.
Overall, these games prove to be beneficial because they are a stress reliever, improve brain functioning, and cure diseases, in addition to being a source of entertainment and recreation. However, there is always another side to every coin. In this case, spending an excessive amount of time playing a video games can be harmful to both children and adults. When it comes to children, the fact that these games are played on a screen can interfere with their academics while also affecting their vision. Adults can also be distracted from their work while participating in office games.
6.Video games help to improve fundamental visual processes.
Playing video games has been shown to improve players’ ability to distinguish subtle differences between different shades of gray, a phenomenon known as “visual contrast sensitivity,” according to Psychology Today. They may also aid in the improvement of the eyesight of the visually impaired, as well as the improvement of the ability of players to visually detect the direction of movement.
7.Video games have been shown to improve executive functioning.
It is referred to as “executive functioning” when a person’s ability to solve problems quickly and efficiently is being discussed. Video games can assist in improving multitasking skills, increasing mental flexibility, and even reversing the mental decline that occurs as people grow older, according to research.
8.Video games can help you improve your everyday abilities.
Playing video games has been shown to improve hand-eye coordination, increase attention spans, and improve both working memory and rapid decision-making abilities in children and adolescents.
9.Video games may be beneficial in reducing anxiety and depression.
The use of video games has been shown to alleviate the symptoms of anxiety and depression, both anecdotally and scientifically. For example, according to Scientific American, the video game Tetris may actually be beneficial in alleviating the symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder. Authors have described how video games can assist those who suffer from a social anxiety disorder in learning how to initiate relationships and understand social cues in forums such as Geek and Sundry.
Negative Effects of Video Games
While video games have been lauded for their numerous benefits, evidence suggests that playing them may be harmful in some cases.
1.Video games have the potential to make people more violent.
Scientists have discovered a direct link between violent video games and an increase in aggressive behavior, according to the British newspaper The Telegraph. Specifically, this applies to “shoot-em-up” games that simulate the use of firearms.
2.Video games have been shown to impair players’ ability to concentrate.
According to a study published in the journal Psychology of Popular Media Culture, there is a link between the amount of time people spend playing video games and their ability to remain focused. Individuals who are already prone to impulsive behavior, according to the findings of the study, may find that playing video games makes them even more prone to it.
3.Video games have the potential to become addictive.
According to a university study, one in every ten youth gamers is “addicted,” and their gaming habits are causing problems in their families, social circles, schools, and personal lives. Worldwide, treatment programs for video game addiction have sprung up, including in the United States, South Korea, and the Netherlands, among other places.
4.Video games have been shown to exacerbate depression and anxiety.
While it is true that video games can be beneficial in the treatment of anxiety and depression, other research has indicated that they may actually cause or exacerbate these conditions. For example, according to a study published in the journal Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, fifth-graders who play video games for two or more hours per day are more likely to experience symptoms of depression than those who play for less time.
While the arguments on both sides of this debate continue, the final decision on whether video games are ultimately “good” or “bad” rests with the reader, who must decide whether they are “good” or “bad.” With consideration for individual circumstances and preferences, the truth is most likely somewhere in the middle of the two extremes.