Games

Does Playing Games Help Your Brain to Stay Active?

How Video Games Keep Your Brain Active

As the years go on and more studies are done, we are finding out more and more about how beneficial video games and regular gaming sessions can be for the brain. Whether you are young or old, there are benefits to playing games daily.

 Whether you play bingo online, are a high-level mage in World of Warcraft, or you’re the most skilled Call of Duty player, gaming is helping your brain in multiple ways.

Problem Solving Skills

No matter which game you are playing, there will be a level of problem-solving involved. Whether it’s figuring out how to line finish a level of Candy Crush or how to beat Portal, problem-solving is constantly happening.

This then expands into your everyday life, as you are able to figure out different and unique ways to find solutions to a specific problem.

Memory

Video games, significantly bigger ones, and character-based ones require players to remember maps, paths, city or town layouts, abilities, and the like. Games stop giving you hints very early on, and you need to remember everything.

Having to remember all of this most certainly can expand into your school or university work and your job, as you would use the exact same parts of your brain.

Perception

When you are playing a game, at any one point, you are in an environment that has multiple stimuli on screen at the same time. Your brain then needs to decide what is and isn’t essential, and you act on it, such as finding a key or taking a particular path.

This skill allows you to become someone who can see through what is unnecessary and be able to focus better on what you need to do.

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Decision Making

You are making decisions all the time while playing video games, with many of them having severe consequences, such as losing all of your gear. This means your brain needs to make the right decision every single time.

In the long term, this gives you the ability to weigh up the pros and cons of a situation quickly, and you are able to make the right choice more often.

IQ

Recent studies have shown that playing games can boost your IQ scores by as much as 2.5 points by playing video games. While this was a small study, it shows that consistent gaming can quite literally make you smarter.

Once again, studies are limited, but scientists believe the combination of mental stimulation, improved memory, decision making, etc., not only leads to your brain being able to function better but makes you smarter.

Improved Learning Ability

It doesn’t matter if you are a seasoned gamer or brand new to it; when a new game comes out, you need to learn a whole lot of new information. Gaming can be viewed as going to school in a way; you are constantly learning.

Once again, this expands beyond your screen as you improve the part of the brain that allows you to learn, and you are able to take in and retain information quicker and for longer. If you can remember everything about your favorite game, there is no reason you can’t learn a textbook from start to finish.

Social Skills

Many believe that serious gamers are bad at being sociable and making friends. While this is true for some, multiplayer games have been shown to help improve social skills, especially in those who are very shy or struggle with social situations.

You need to learn to communicate effectively, work in a team, be a leader or follow someone more informed, and you have to be friendly. Gaming helps you make friends and gives you the communication skills you will need in other aspects of your life.

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Increased Grey Matter

Finally, grey matter. Grey matter is the part of your brain that helps with connections and ensures all aspects of your brain are firing on all cylinders. Grey matter is what deteriorates with Alzheimer’s and dementia, and what causes sufferers to lose function, such as not knowing how to eat or move.

Many scientists and studies have shown that doing Sudoku or crosswords regularly helps keep your grey matter healthy, but gaming is even better for it. Therefore it is highly encouraged that if you can, you should play some form of video game every day.

Huynh Nguyen

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