In the past few years, the rise in the number of people who have made playing video games their career has risen dramatically. In part, this is thanks to the growth of e-sport competitions that take playing a video game to a whole new level for competitive players. Due to this increasing interest, a lot of academic research is being done as to how this practice affects someone’s physical and mental health.
The Need for Research
Video game players often spend hours upon hours sitting in front of large screens, not moving an inch at times. This is bound to have negative effects on the body, which is one of the reasons why people suffering from game addiction can have such a hard time in their actual lives. However, there are also many benefits that come from playing virtual titles, especially ones that fall under certain game genres. All of this leads to some interesting research that is being done in many academic institutions around the world about how this process may actually influence someone’s life.
As a student, you might also be asked by one of your professors at some point to write a research paper on this topic, or you might be interested enough in the subject yourself to work on it for your thesis project. No matter the case, it can often prove hard to find time to actually write your essay while also researching the subject, in which case you might look for some websites for essay writing. In this case, using a website that writes essays for you can help you save a lot of time. And once you are done with your research about how video gaming affects someone’s working memory or cognitive abilities, you will see how big of an impact this form of entertainment can actually have on people.
The Positive Influences of Video Games
The biggest influence of playing a video game on a person’s life is that certain types of their attention are improved. In particular, a player’s ‘Selective Attention’ and ‘Sustained Attention’ have been found to improve over time. The parts of their brain that are important for attention are more efficient than those people who don’t play. Game players are also found to require less activation in order to stay focused on difficult tasks.
Better Visual and Spatial Skills
Another important positive influence is that people who play have improved visuospatial skills, which essentially means that they can often identify the visual and spatial relationships between different objects better than others. The right hippocampus of the brain is also enlarged in the case of gamers, which shows how the process affects the brain’s very structure too.
Playing titles in certain genres such as VR can help develop spatial awareness.
Development of Cognitive Skills
It has also been found that playing titles from certain game genres may improve the player’s cognitive abilities like spatial navigation, memory, reasoning, and perception. One of the more influential genres in this regard is first-person shooting titles that have long been criticized for causing aggression in young players, which, while true, is not the only effect.
Growth of Problem-Solving Capabilities
Playing strategic titles has been linked with better problem-solving capabilities for children and adolescents alike. Such players also have more creativity than those children who use other types of technology like cell phones or computers.
Creation of Social Communities
A lot of the titles that are played these days are ones that have a social element attached to them since they are multi-player titles. People play such titles with other people worldwide, develop relationships and friendships, and help each other out quite a lot. This has created many online communities that people can benefit and learn from.
The Negative Influences of Video Games
While the number of people suffering from this form of addiction is low, it is still a threat. It has been found that when people who play games are exposed to certain cues related to gaming, their brain reacts in a way similar to how it reacts in the case of other disorders related to addiction. When this activity is taken away from a regular player, they often show signs of withdrawal and even aggression.
Selective Brain Development
For decades now, many scientists have said that since gaming requires only certain parts of the brain to function at a higher level, other parts of the brain, like those responsible for learning, behavior, and emotion, could stay underdeveloped. This can often lead to people being anti-social, depressed, and aggressive in their real lives.
Physical Toll on the Body
This one is pretty self-explanatory. People who play for very long periods of time, often for complete days, may suffer from physical health issues such as muscle pain, bad posture, and even obesity. When all you do is sit in a chair all day and game, without any sort of physical movement other than that of your hands, then you’re bound to develop some serious issues with your body.
In most titles, only your hands are physically moving while the rest of the body stays stationary. This can cause physical health issues like muscular pain.
So, is playing a video game good or bad? Well, it depends on each case. While many people suffer from the negative influences that these titles can have on their everyday lives, others play them just to have fun and feel good. Even if they don’t get any other benefit from playing them, they at least get gratification and a sense of happiness, which is important for one’s emotional health. So, when you’re working on writing an essay about how games influence our lives, keep in mind that there are two different sides to the issue that need to be researched. And it’s not always about working memory or cognitive abilities but also about a sense of community and achievement.