are they really that harmful? Not necessarily. It is true that, in excess, it can be harmful. But it has some advantages. What is the skill that video games develop?
A research was devoted to study this particular activity. The results show that it has at least one positive effect. It influences brain activity and cognitive decision-making skills. That is, it helps us to choose an appropriate reaction quickly.
The study was published in Neuroimage: Reports Recommends something regarding video games. They could be a training method. It would improve rapid decision-making processes in the brain. Something relevant in cases where the brain has suffered some neuronal damage.
how did they measure the effects of video games? Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) was used. This is how they assessed neuronal activity. There were 47 college-age participants. twenty-eight people played regularly and 19 did not. Most of those who played opted for very active games. For example, real-time strategy, the shooters first-person shooters or team battles.
The results showed that regular video game players responded faster and more accurately. The images obtained with fMRI showed something as well. There was increased activity in certain parts of their brain. For example, the right lingual gyrus, the left thalamus and the right supplementary motor area. These regions are involved in producing motor responses to incoming visual information.
“Video games can improve decision-making ability.” So says neuroscientist Mukesh Dhamala and his research partner, physicist Tim Jordan. The two wrote the published paper.
The relationship between video games and increased cognitive ability is not new. With each research we get closer to understanding it. The search continues for ways to harness their positive effects.
“We will identify brain networks relevant to video games. They could be effectively used for training. For example, efficiency training in decision making and therapeutic interventions,” concludes Dhamala.