Video games affect the brain

Research demonstrates that video games can influence our brains in both beneficial and harmful ways.

Video games affect the brain

By Hannah Nichols Video gaming is clearly a popular form of entertainment, with video gamers collectively spending 3 billion hours per week in front of their screens. Due to their widespread use, scientists have researched how video games affect the brain and behavior.

Are these effects positive or negative? We examine the evidence. There is increasing research focused on the impact of video gaming on the brain.

Video games affect the brain

At a glance, more than million people in the United States play video games regularly, or for at least 3 hours per week. The average American gamer is a year-old adult, with 72 percent of gamers aged 18 or older. Video game sales continue to increase year on year.

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Inthe video game industry sold more than The top three best-selling video games of were Call of Duty: These games fall into the first-person shooter or action-adventure genres - the top two genres, accounting for First-person shooter and action genres often stand accused of stirring aggression and causing violence and addiction.

Decades of research examining video gaming and violence have failed to reach consensus among scientists. Scientists have been unable to find a causal link between playing video games and acts of violence in the real world. Video games and brain changes A growing body of evidence, however, shows that video gaming can affect the brain and, furthermore, cause changes in many regions of the brain.

Game addicts have functional and structural changes in the neural reward system. Scientists have recently collected and summarized results from scientific studies to determine how video games can influence our brains and behaviors.

The findings of their review were published in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience.

Video games affect the brain

Moreover, gaming is a popular activity, so everyone seems to have strong opinions on the topic," says Marc Palaus, first author of the review. By looking at all research to date, Palaus and team aimed to observe whether any trends had emerged with regard to how video games impact the structure and activity of the brain.

A total of 22 of the reviewed studies explored structural changes in the brain and studies analyzed changes in brain functionality and behavior. Results of the studies indicate that playing video games not only changes how our brains perform but also their structure.

Video games and brain changes

For example, video game use is known to affect attention. The studies included in the review show that video game players display improvements in several types of attention, including sustained attention and selective attention.

Furthermore, the regions of the brain that play a role in attention are more efficient in gamers compared with non-gamers, and they require less activation to stay focused on demanding tasks. In long-term gamers and individuals who had volunteered to follow a video game training plan, the right hippocampus was enlarged.Effects of Video Games on the Brain | This is Your Child's Brain on Video Games Video games leave kids revved up, stressed out, and primed for a meltdown.

10 Ways Video Games Affect Your Brain - Listverse

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Aug 09,  · Action Video Games May Affect The Brain Differently: Shots - Health News Millions of people play video games, but there's plenty of disagreement on whether they're good or . Playing video games may lead to improvements in areas of attention, cognitive control and workload, visuospatial skills and more; Video games may alter the reward-processing areas of your brain, potentially leading to addiction, and .

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