Can Video Games Make You Smarter

Video games and the people who love them often have a bad reputation to overcome. Far too many people ascribe several negative connotations to the pastime. People think that video games are a waste of time and that they “rot” your brain. Some people even think that video games make you dumber. Someone once described television as “chewing gum for the brain,” hinting at the perceived deleterious effect of the medium. Unfortunately, many people tend to speak about video games in the same way, but is this an accurate description? Fortunately for those who love playing video games, it isn’t. Research has shown that playing video games positively affects you, improving those qualities that make you “smart.” Here are five ways that playing video games sharpens your brain and makes you more intelligent.

Socializing makes you smarter – Socializing is a big part of gaming. Don’t believe the myth that gamers always go it alone. Gamers often play with friends or even strangers in person or online. They also use apps and websites like to get together with other gamers. Gaming has given us another way to congregate; luckily, all this socializing has a positive effect on gamers’ brains since it has been shown to exercise people’s minds and boost cognitive performance.

Attention span – Video games demand your undivided attention. Having your concentration wane could mean losing your game in an embarrassing fashion. And so, with video games, your attention always has to be “on.” Luckily video games boost your attention span, which it has to do for you to keep track of objects constantly popping in and out of your visual field. And since these objects move about on a screen that is otherwise quite busy, keeping track can help boost your selective attention.

Decision-making capabilities – Research has shown that people who play video games regularly have better decision-making skills than people who don’t play. It’s clear that video gamers make decisions more quickly and accurately. Research has shown that they have more activity in those parts of their brains responsible for making decisions.

Problem-solving capabilities – Video games force you to sharpen your problem-solving skills by presenting challenges and obstacles that must be overcome. And the truth is that most people repeatedly fail at these problems, attempting solution after solution that fails. However, the more they fail, the harder they attempt to right their wrongs and attack the problem again. And, make no mistake, they have fun while they do it. This cycle of failure and regrouping positively affects one’s willingness to solve real-world problems.

Improve memory and learning – As mentioned before, video games take you through a series of failures and triumphs, which help keep the game fun. Keeping track of all these will have a beneficial effect on your brain. It’s no surprise that video games then have a special effect on those regions of your brain responsible for creating and storing memories. This is why playing video games has been shown to improve cognitive performance. These cognitive changes can last for years after you quit playing. This news is essential for adults at risk for cognitive decline.

This article is written by Hemant Kumar Gupta.




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