Video games are more than just a source of entertainment. They have many mental benefits for individuals of all ages. In fact, video games are extremely popular among adults and kids alike. In 2017, 26% of video game players in the United States were over the age of 50, while 29% of players were under the age of 18. For both adults and children, here are five ways that playing video games can improve brain performance — regardless of age.
1. Helps Solve Problems Easier
Many online games require players to use strategy and think through scenarios carefully to progress. Some educational video games also require individuals to answer certain questions or solve equations — such as math story problems — before advancing. For students, these can be powerful learning tools as it allows them to master certain concepts and skills. Students may have to repeat certain skills and concepts over and over again until they fully understand it.
2. Improves Memory
One study found that playing video games can greatly improve a child’s memory if the video game boasts a 3D environment rather than a simple 2D environment. The reasoning why the 3D environment makes the difference in improving memory is still being studied. However, one theory suggests that a 3D environment is more difficult to play and requires more mental exertion from the player, resulting in many improved learning benefits for the player.
3. Increases their Focus
Video games are helping players improve their attention span and focus on certain items for longer periods of time. It is easy to become caught up in a video game and put all your focus into the game, which increases an individual’s overall attention span. Additionally, online video games help an individual develop essential prioritizing skills and determine what is most important in the game. It is an excellent way to teach children how to prioritize tasks, concepts, and skills.
4. Video Games Can Stimulate Learning
There are various types of video games available. Some of these games are more complex than others, but when a video game is enticing to a child, whether it is difficult or not, it ignites inquisitiveness, challenge, and curiosity in an individual. This, in turn, stimulates learning and makes a child more eager to continue learning and wanting to progress — whether in the game or the concepts taught in the game. Additionally, if using an educational online video game, many children may not recognize how much they are learning or realize the various concepts and skills they are being taught. This can be particularly beneficial for students who dislike school or even struggle with certain subjects.
5. Makes Multitasking Easier
Some online video games require extensive multitasking. Whether the player must use several commands simultaneously or they need to complete several tasks at once to progress, strong multitasking skills can help individuals progress in the game. The more an individual plays a game that requires multitasking skills, the easier it is to improve these skills and utilize them even after turning off the game.
Video games can be excellent learning tools and offer numerous mental benefits to players of any age. Sign up to receive more information on video games and how they can improve an individual’s learning.