Surprising Health Benefits of Playing Video Games

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Your parents have probably told you to get you off your PlayStation every time you sat down in front of it due to its perceived long-term effects on your health. However, contrary to what most adults think, playing videos games can actually be beneficial for one’s health. Here, we listed down some of the touted health benefits of gaming on children and adults alike.

boy and a girl playing video game

  1. Boosts Memory

More and more studies are showing that video games are actually good for the memory. Recently, a study conducted by a group of researchers found that the hippocampus – the region associated with memory and complex learning – was altered through playing 3D video games. The study revealed a 12 percent memory improvement in individuals who played the said game. Although it’s still not quite clear as to how these games are improving the memory function, researchers are excited about how this activity can possibly be used to treat people suffering from cognition and memory issues.

  1. Improves Hand-Eye Coordination

While it’s not readily apparent, playing video games actually help in developing impressive levels of hand-eye coordination. In fact, games have been used to train some surgeons, as they are required to perform tasks with precise movements in a very limited space, which is pretty much the description of a typical game. Fast-paced games, such as first-person shooting games, have been shown to greatly help in developing fast decision making habits and boosting motor skills.

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  1. Sharpens Decision-Making Skills

Aside from improving hand-eye coordination, playing video games is also believed to help in sharpening one’s decision-making skills. Most games are loaded with problems that force players to weigh each option’s pros and cons before making a decision that would impact the entire in-game experience. Strategy games, such as StarCraft, requires its players to think critically on a high level. Even first-person shooter games require a good deal of strategical and critical thinking, instead of simply aiming and shooting at your enemies.

  1. Relieves Depression and Stress

Nothing alleviates stress quite like a battle tank annihilating waves of enemies in a faraway planet. There’s science to back that up: some evidences are now showing the connection between playing video games and reduced stress and depressions levels. As it turns out, video games aid in keeping our brains busy, removing us (at least temporarily) from the anxiety and stress that the real-world presents. Simply playing games like Plants vs Zombies, for instance, can already be a relaxing exercise for most personality types.

Aside from being a good source of entertainment, video games, it turns out, also offer several surprising health benefits. So don’t feel bad about spending an hour or two playing your favourite video games—just make sure it’s not all you do all the time.

I'm going to beat you, Dad!

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