Ten Benefits of Gaming to Your Brain as of 2020
Since its introduction, video games have become one of the most popular forms of entertainment in the world, they come in many different forms with so many people enjoy playing them. Thus, as with any other popular entertainment, there have been many debates over the actual effect video games have on the human body once someone plays too much. Many scientists have come up with their own hypotheses about how gaming can affect your brain and they all came to a conclusion: video games are good for your brain. However, since we can all agree that reading through their research paper can be an excruciating process, we have gone through all the hard works for you and compiled a Ten Benefits of Video Games to Your Brain as of 2020.
1. Improve the brain’s balancing problem
Can you believe it? But it’s true! The human ability to have proper balance and walk around upright is a quite important function that is maintained by the brain and the equilibrium is an ability that is greatly affected once people get older. Playing games can actually improve the balance and gait for senior citizens. A study conducted by the University of Illinois at Chicago proved that elders who were tested after playing games had an improved sense of balance and gait.
2. Improve the brain’s ability to read
Dyslexia is a neurological medical condition that originates in the brain, making it considerably harder for one to read, write and spell. A research project cited by Cell.com said that games could work as a potential relief for children who suffer from this.
A research study published by the PLOS journal reasons that playing video games can actually lead to an increase in the brain's cognitive flexibility. So what does the term “cognitive flexibility” mean? It refers to the ability to quickly shift from one concept to another. In other words, it is a significant factor for the brain, the study examined how gaming can enhance that ability and it found that a rapid switch between multiple sources of information in many strategy games can help increase the player’s cognitive flexibility.
4. Help the brain with its perception
Video games can help improve the brain’s perception of visual data. How does this work? Well, video games, especially the fast-paced action games regularly force players to identify a large number of objects in a relatively cluttered space. This help people, especially the youngsters to be able to visually tell apart different that are very close in shade. A study was conducted about this opinion and the result is that the players of action games, especially Call of Duty, have a greater sense of contrast sensitivity when they receive visual data.
5. Induce creativity and problem-solving skill
This part is obvious, as there have been many games that force users to think hard and think creatively if they want to win. For example, Angry Bird makes you think about the best way to destroy the complex structures with the least amount of shots possible. So, by playing these games, the player’s brain was provoked to flex its problem-solving logic.
6. Improve hand-eye coordination
A study by Beth Israel Medical Center in New York states that playing video games on a regular basis helps young people develop their hand-eye coordination, which will tremendously help you if you want to pursue a surgeon career, as they will be required to perform laparoscopic surgical procedures or operate robotic devices to perform minimally invasive surgeries. Doing these require impeccable hand-eye coordination. The study asked people who had been playing video games more than three hours a week to do laparoscopic surgeries and they all did significantly better and faster than the ones who didn’t play video games.
7. Boost the brain’s gray matter
Video games can actually help people have greater control over small movements in their body. That’s the belief of some Poland researchers. A study conducted with the lead author being Natalia Kovalchuk at the University of Social Sciences and Humanities in Warsaw, Poland. It states that playing video games can potentially boost the number of gray matters in some parts of the human brain. The study indicates that gamers have more gray matters in two areas of the brain that correlate with learning motor skills. In addition, gamers were found to have a quicker reaction time.
8. Help learn to resist distractions
The brain can receive a quite large amount of information in a single millisecond, so it is no surprise that sometimes we all, especially kids, just get distracted by some of the less important information. This is no longer a problem as a study at Northwestern University has proven that playing video games can help you learn and perceive data better in spite of outside distractions and interferences. This mean playing games can allow you to learn for a longer time period in an environment full of distractions.
9. Improve attention span and memory
Yes, you did not read it wrong, playing video games can indeed help to improve the attention span and memory capability of everyone, especially the elders. A study at the University of California San Francisco, led by Professor Adam Ghazali and a team of game designers, tackled this problem by creating a game called Neuro Racer. The study had measured overall improvements in the memory and attention span of the volunteers.
10. Stimulate brain growth
An anthropological study helmed by Professor Simon Kahn tackled on the effects of video games on the brain at Max Planck Institute of Human Development in Berlin, Germany discovers that playing video games can stimulate your brain’s growth. The study scans volunteers’ brains and then let them play Super Mario 64 over a period of two months, the result was that the players have three specific areas of brain growth: the prefrontal cortex, the right hippocampus, and the cerebellum. All of them are parts of the brain that conduct navigation. It is thought that playing video games with characters navigating simultaneously in different ways is the possible cause of why the subject’s brain growth was stimulated.