Growing up I wasn’t a stranger to video games. We had everything from an N64 to the latest PC, Xbox, and PlayStation. To this day, I still play a ton and don’t have any shame in doing so.
What I was a stranger to, however, was people believing video games were bad for children. Or telling them that it’ll “rot your brain”. I remember the first time I heard phrases like that, I was shocked. As I got older I found it was actually a commonplace belief, that there was no benefit and only consequences.
Study after study has been done to prove this theory, though there hasn’t been any success. What they have seen through time and time again is that children’s brains do function differently just not negatively.
The Verge just recently reported new study data shows that kids who play video games score higher on brain function tests and have better memory capability. The study that included over 2,000 children between the ages of nine and ten is where this data was formed.
The children were separated into two groups. Those that play video games and those that did not. The children that did play played at least 21 hours a week. The team heading the study then looked over all the children’s performances on tests. They found that the kids who played did indeed do better than those that did not. This is leading researchers to believe that gamers do have a leg up in certain functions.
What the team also found was that there was no difference in mental health between the two groups, disproving that they destroy one’s mental health. Overall, there isn’t a negative consequence to allowing children to play video games, so a few hours here and there won’t hurt anyone. In fact, it seems to be more of a cognitive boost than anything.
The research done will lend a hand to a bigger project by Akili Interactive on creating video games to assist with cognitive dysfunction. If it comes to fruition one day the doctor might be prescribing Call Of Duty instead of Adderall.