how video games effect adolecents

by: Hannah Mccreight

positive and negative effects of video games

"Most of the bad effects of video games are blamed on the violence they contain. Children who play more violent video games are more likely to have increased aggressive thoughts, feelings, and behaviors, and decreased prosocial helping, according to a scientific study (Anderson & Bushman, 2001). The effect of video game violence in kids is worsened by the games’ interactive nature. In many games, kids are rewarded for being more violent. The act of violence is done repeatedly. The child is in control of the violence and experiences the violence in his own eyes (killings, kicking, stabbing and shooting). This active participation, repetition and reward are effective tools for learning behavior. Indeed, many studies seem to indicate that violent video games may be related to aggressive behavior (such as Anderson & Dill, 2000; Gentile, Lynch & Walsh, 2004). However, the evidence is not consistent and this issue is far from settled. Many experts including Henry Jenkins of Massachusetts Institute of Technology have noted that there is a decreased rate of juvenile crime whch coincides with the popularity of games such as Death Race, Mortal Kombat, Doom and Grand Theft auto. He concludes that teenage players are able to leave the emotional effects of the game behind when the game is over.

o Quick thinking, making fast analysis and decisions. Sometimes the player does this almost every second of the game giving the brain a real workout. According to researchers at the University of Rochester, led by Daphne Bavelier, a cognitive scientist, games simulating stressful events such as those found in battle or action games could be a training tool for real-world situations. The study suggests that playing action video games primes the brain to make quick decisions. Video games can be used to train soldiers and surgeons, according to the study. Importantly, decisions made by action-packed video game players are no less accurate. According to Bavelier, "Action game players make more correct decisions per unit time. If you are a surgeon or you are in the middle of a battlefield, that can make all the difference."
o Accuracy - Action games, according to a study by the University of Rochester, train the player's brain to make faster decisions without losing accuracy. In today’s world, it is important to move quickly without sacrificing accuracy.
o Strategy and anticipation - Steven Johnson, author of Everything Bad is Good For You: How Today's Popular Culture is Actually Making Us Smarter, calls this "telescoping." The gamer must deal with immediate problems while keeping his long-term goals on his horizon.
o Situational awareness - – Defense News reported that the Army include video games to train soldiers to improve their situational awareness in combat. Many strategy games also require the player to become mindful of sudden situational changes in the game and adapt accordingly."

There are both negative and positive effects that come from video gaming and its important the you can see both sides. Video games could improve your awareness, quick thinking, and many more. Teens who played violent games when they were younger tend to have a higher crime rate, they are also more aggressive than others( "Raise smart kid").

my view on the positive and negatives

I agree that there are both pros and cons of gaming, but lately there are less positives and more negatives. Each new video game released is more violent than the last, for example mortal combat has been around for years only it was never as violent as it is now. NetherRealm studios recently released their new game Mortal Combat x, this new game is played by 2 players fighting to the death by frighteningly graphic fatalities, how would it make you feel knowing your child was exposed to things like this? In the paragraph 'positive and negative effects video games have on your brain' it says " Most of the bad effects of video games are blamed on the violence they contain. Children who play more violent video games are more likely to have increased aggressive thoughts'. Too much video games could also push your kid away from social events such as sports, school events, and interacting with family and friends. Some of the positive effects listed are true but only to a certain point, for example Call Of Duty, most teenagers that play video games play or have played some version of Call Of Duty. Although Call Of Duty is a violent game it could enhance your ability to think fast and make quick decisions.

prevention of video game obsession

"With news about video games turning kids into bullies—or zombies—and a growing number of experts warning about the dangers of too much screen time, it may be tempting to ban computers and smart phones altogether. Don't, say experts.If you forbid game play, you'll forfeit any opportunity to influence your children's behavior. A better approach: play with them, says Judy Willis, M.D., a neurologist and member of the American Academy of Neurology based in Santa Barbara, CA, who suggests starting with free online educational games.The key to ensuring your children have a healthy relationship with video games (and, yes, there is such a thing) means ensuring they take advantage of pleasurable experiences outside these games. A few tips:

* PAY ATTENTION According to David Greenfield, Ph.D., founder of The Center for Internet and Technology Addiction and assistant clinical professor of psychiatry at the University of Connecticut School of Medicine, 80 percent of the time a child spends on the computer has nothing to do with academics. Putting computers, smart phones, and other gaming devices in a central location—and not behind closed doors—allows you to monitor their activities. Learn how to check the computer's search history to confirm what your children have been doing on the Internet.

* ESTABLISH BOUNDARIES Set—and enforce—limits on screen time. “Kids are often unable to accurately judge the amount of time they spend gaming. Further, they are unconsciously reinforced to stay in the game,” says Dr. Greenfield, who recommends no more than one or two hours of screen time on weekdays. Taking advantage of firewalls, electronic limits, and blocks on cell phones and Internet sites can help.

* START TALKING Discuss Internet use and gaming early on with your kids. Set clear expectations to help steer them in a healthy direction before a problem begins. Communication doesn't necessarily mean a formal talk. Rather, it's about giving your child an opportunity to share their interests and experiences with you.

* KNOW YOUR KID If your child is doing well in the real world, participating in school, sports, and social activities, then limiting game play may not be as important. The key, say experts, is maintaining a presence in their lives and being aware of their interests and activities. On the other hand, if you have a kid who already has anger issues, you might want to limit violent games, suggests Tom A. Hummer, Ph.D., assistant research professor in the department of psychiatry at Indiana University School of Medicine in Indianapolis.

* GET HELP For some young people, gaming becomes an irresistible obsession. If your child is showing signs of a video game addiction, help is available. Treatment options range from limited outpatient therapy to intensive residential boarding schools and inpatient programs.

But not all gaming is bad. Video games can help the brain in a number of ways, such as enhanced visual perception, improved ability to switch between tasks, and better information processing. “In a way, the video game model is brilliant,” says Judy Willis, M.D., neurologist, educator, and American Academy of Neurology (AAN) member based in Santa Barbara, CA."

Believe it or not video game obsession is very likely to happen in teens ages 10-18. You should set a time limit for how long your child can play video games each day so that your balancing school, friends, and gaming. Make sure your kid is still participating in social activities, if they would rather stay home than go hang out with there friends they are showing signs of a gaming addiction(Game Theory: How Do Video Games Affect the Developing Brains of Children and Teens?" ).

my view on the prevention of video game obsession

although game obsession is becoming a big issue in the world there are a few steps scientists found to prevent it. Allowing your child to play video games for a restricted amount of time each day is a good idea, scientist suggest that you set a timer for a reasonable amount of time and that is the time your child gets to play his or her video games. I agree that it is important for kids to focus on school before games, I also think it is important for kids to have some outdoor activity each day.


"Game Theory: How Do Video Games Affect the Developing Brains... : Neurology Now." LWW. N.p., n.d. Web. 29 May 2015.

"Raise Smart Kid." Raise Smart Kid. N.p., n.d. Web. 29 May 2015.