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Are Video Games Useful or Harmful?

Hailey Toth, Editor

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Many 7th and 8th grade students play video games from when they get home till when they go to bed. They hear video games are a distraction to your life, but research has shown that video games can be more useful than harmful.

A new study has shown that playing video games can stimulate neurogenesis and connectivity in the brain regions which activate memory, planning, and skills.

“I think video games are mostly bad for your brain. Although they are  engaging and they stimulate your brain, if you overplay it, it’s really bad for your mind. If you isolate yourself for so long playing a specific game, it’s easier to go without human interaction,” said Arianna May, Falcon.

Gaming boosts the cerebral function with the cerebellar and muscle memory of the cerebellum which improves emotional function and performance.

“Amblyopia (also called ‘lazy eye”) is a disorder arising from early childhood in which one eye becomes essentially non-functional.  Li and colleagues performed experiments in which some adults with this disorder played action video games using only the bad eye. Other adults with the disorder did other things with the good eye covered, such as knitting or watching television.  The result was that those in the gaming condition showed great improvement—often to normal or near-normal functioning—while others did not,” said Peter Gray from Psychology Today.

Students are familiar with the saying ‘video games rot your brain’ when they actually can do the opposite. Depending on the games you play and how long, they cause stronger connectivity and increasing brain size.

Study leader Simone Kühn and her colleagues think that video games could be useful for treating patients with mental health problems where  brain regions are reduced in size, such as schizophrenia or PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder). Specially designed video games help children with attention deficit disorder, brain injury, and older adults with depression or dementia.

Video Games are more useful than harmful for people with disorders and have trouble focusing, having an injury that needs to be fixed, or people who just enjoy them.

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The student news site of Sierra Middle School
Are Video Games Useful or Harmful?