Can Video Games be good for you?
The question parents doubt all the time: Can video games be good for you?
Here is more information on that particular study: http://www.kurzweilai.net/video-game-playing-found-beneficial-for-the-brain
Besides the traits of the brains that have been mentioned earlier, studies have shown that it also helps with the brain flexibility or cognitive flexibility. It's the mental ability, or having the mental capacity, to switch between two or more concepts, and to think about multiple concepts simultaneously. the popular "Sims" game has been show to increase accuracy and speed of these mental traits. Another trait that video games have shown to improve is a person's ability to discern subtle changes in the brightness of image. This trait is one that diminishes with time and affects tasks like driving at night. Studies have shown that first-person, action games, also known as shooter games, help with this contrast sensitivity function. Being able to pick out enemies in a game and reacting quickly helps gamers develop and retain this function, and have even been able to correct eyesight.
Games don't just help people retain and exercise functions, but they also help people who have problems with those functions. For example, a study done with kids from the age of 7-13 with Dyslexia were separated into groups and asked to play "Rayman's Raving Rabids" and other games. The group that played "Rayman's Raving Rabids" showed improved skills in reading, with both speed and accuracy. Games also help people of an older generation and not just kids. Games help reduce mental decay associated with aging, especially games that are considered "brain teasers," or games specifically designed to exercise different brain functions.
Games also help people in recovery or with illnesses. People undergoing chemotherapy or other serious treatments are immersed in video games. The brain takes the function off of the pain and focuses on the task(s) at hand; therefore, acting as a pain reliever and reducing anxiety. Gaming has also been shown to release endorphins which are generally associated with happiness and capable of reducing or numbing discomfort. In studies with stroke patients, games help in rehabilitation of lost arm motor skills and hand strength. They have reported that they are more likely to double the number of arm movements because the movements are made to accomplish goals versus repetitive exercises. It has been shown that games can also be used as a form of counseling for depression. Again, it's association with endorphins can generally help with a number of conditions and illnesses that people suffer from everyday.
These are just a few ways that show how video games can be healthy for you. The number of possibilities are endless, it just takes someone like you to find them
Activities to try!
Activity one: Read about it.
Please research on the number of things and ways that video games can be helpful. Educating oneself is the responsibility we owe ourselves and trust me, your brain will thank you for it. Here is an article with a short overview of some ways it can helpful. It is a good starting point and lists the sources they used.
Activity two: Do it.
For 30 minute a day for six to eight weeks participate in games called "brain teasers." They help improve mental and physical functions, but only if you're actively participating, so lets do it! Find a brain teaser and work on a mental function you'd like to improve, like memory, speed, or accuracy.
Activity three: Share it:
Teach your friends, your family, your neighbors what you took away from this. Please encourage them to participate in different ways and have fun with it! Remember, everything is healthy in moderation!