Is Playing Video Games Beneficial For Your Brain?

This is a question asked very often by both die hard gamers and worrying parents – does the habit of playing games benefit your brain in any way? The answer might not be in an absolute yes or no, but there are many long term advantages of gaming habits surfacing through recent studies. Your addiction to action games or word games might just be enhancing your reflexes and stimulating your brain in beneficial ways.

The recent advancement of online games has caused all of us to become gamers in one way or another. Some people enjoy violent sniper games whereas others prefer more peaceful ones like word games and car games. With so many varieties of games available online and on smart phones, everyone has found their favorite niche of games. People of all age groups are indulging in gaming activities nowadays, and this gives rise to the increasing worry about the side effects of gaming.

Most people quote side impacts of gaming like headaches, damage of eye sight, and other related problems like migraines and tiredness. One common complaint (which often comes from parents) is the sheer wastage of time while playing games. Nobody has ever considered the time spent on playing games, which is mostly a large number of hours for some people, an investment. But some studies suggest that playing games might after all be fruitful for the human brain.

This is not only good news for die hard gamers, but also for parents who worry for their child’s health and hobbies. It is true that one’s hobbies play a great role in eventually shaping their abilities, skills, and aptitude. Therefore, gaming can affect your skills and reflexes in different ways.

Now, starting off with the advantages, we must point out that it is not the intellect-requiring games that prove to be most beneficial; however, the action and shooting related games are the ones that are best for your brain. One might expect games like chess, scrabble, puzzles, Othello, or even tetris to be more constructive, but it is the other way round. Games like Call of Duty, Halo, and World of War Craft are more mind stimulating than you think!

A recent independent study on gaming carried out by researchers C. Shawn Green and Daphne Bavelier suggests that people who are active gamers tend to have a greater attention span and quicker reflexes. Gamers are quicker when it comes to tasks like object recognition, spatial localization, and reacting to situations, the study suggested.

If you are an active gamer, you are more likely to have stronger reflexes and reaction times. This is a great advantage of video games in the long run, and therefore this helps in the mental development of children’s minds.

Game fanatics also exhibit other signs like quick decision making and better hand-eye coordination. There is a lot of neurobiology behind these positive effects of gaming, as studies suggest that gamers utilize different neural network paths as compared to non gamers.

So if you are a game addict, you might as well stick to the habit and make the most of it. Video games are not all bad news; new studies are suggesting many pros of gaming with each passing day.