Computer games: beneficial or harmful?

Recently, scientists from different countries have been openly talking about the certain benefits of computer games, and not just about the harm. In addition, scientists say that games are especially beneficial for adults and elderly people. For many players, such statements are unusual to hear, because they are used to hearing about the dangers of games literally everywhere. However, players know that gaming is a hobby that can be shared with friends and even parents. For example, discuss the stunning views of Paris during the French Revolution in Assassin’s Creed: Unity.

In 2016, the international journal Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology, which studies social psychiatry and psychiatric epidemiology, published research results on the topic “Does time spent playing video games affect children’s mental health, as well as the development of social and cognitive skills?” Studies have shown that approximately 20% of children play games for about 5 hours a week, and in the process of playing, 95% of children increase their brain activity and interest in learning about the world. And the theory that games are played to get away from reality has not been confirmed. Scientists explain their discoveries by the fact that during the game, three information channels are involved, such as seeing, hearing, touching – all this provides interactivity. During the game, all parts of the brain are involved and develop evenly.

In terms of research on the impact of computer games on adults, the University of California, Berkeley conducted research that found that a 2 hour game session increased visual acuity. This study focused on the prevention and treatment of amblyopia (also called lazy eye) and became unique, as amblyopia is less and less amenable to correction with age. Scientists linked the results obtained with the presence of a large number of dynamic objects on the screen, especially in shooter and action games. However, games such as the real-time strategy genre also require care and planning, as do car-stimulation games and sport games, which require perceiving information from the screen and giving certain signals to the fingers.

In many countries, games are used by doctors to prevent age-related brain disorders such as senile dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. The elderly are offered short play sessions as adjunctive therapy. This has a positive effect on the brain activity of the elderly. In addition, the games themselves entertain people and distract them, and this undoubtedly has a positive effect on the rehabilitation of patients. Even using a joystick while playing can benefit the fine motor skills of the hands.

So, the situation is as follows – despite the results of scientific research, many people are still wary of games. Until now, many people perceive games negatively. This is mainly because we can devote too much time to them, and from the outside it looks like a gambling addiction. There is no doubt that the main benefit of games is entertainment, most often they give positive emotions and joy. And this has a positive effect on people’s health. Thus, games are useful in moderation, you should not forget about other activities and live communication. In many games, this advice is even placed on the loading screen for players, for example in World of Warcraft.

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