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How Playing Games Can Benefit Your Mental Health

Playing Games Can Benefit Your Mental Health

There is a belief that online gaming and playing video games, in general, are detrimental to emotional and mental health. However, gaming has many benefits such as boosting cognitive abilities and improving problem-solving skills. Not to mention that gaming skills can be transferred to usage in the outside world.

Any type of game from video games, trivia board games, online bingo, or poker requires concentration and strategy. The level of concentration that games necessitate helps players develop the mental agility and problem-solving skills of the gamer.

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The many benefits of gaming

Dexterity and reaction times are also aided by playing video games and other games that require quick responses as bingo does. When playing bingo, the players must listen to the bingo caller so they can mark their cards quickly and be ready for the next call-out. Being mentally alert is a staple of any game.

Gamers also see an improvement in memory from playing video games. Many games require players to remember a considerable amount of information at one time. From knowing certain locations, where items can be found, which items are necessary, which quest or task needs to be completed, and even more complex mechanics such as how enemies or bosses fight and the best strategies to use against them.

Many games also put a great emphasis on memory, like remembering which numbers have been revealed, cards already dealt, the payout results of certain symbol combinations, and more. The memory is stimulated in many ways while playing games, and this beneficial effect does indeed transfer to areas of life outside of gaming.

Mental health benefits

Gaming also improves other areas of mental health, not just cognition. There are highly social aspects of online gaming and social interaction is proven to raise self-esteem and emotional contentment.

Players interact with each other through chat boxes, or voice party systems to coordinate missions, collaborate on strategies, or just to socialize in general. Even in online bingo and casino games players chat with each other between rounds. Socializing while gaming creates bonds and encourages people to work together to complete tasks together.

Socializing online, instead of in ‘real life’ might seem non-beneficial but interacting with friends over games or through messengers is still a helpful measure to combat social isolation. People grow close to each other through their shared interest in games, and through that shared interest they discover other interests they have in common. Deeper friendships are created through these experiences.

An improved attention span is another benefit of playing games. Gamers develop the ability to focus and notice small details, often many of them at a time, and must learn to resist impulsiveness. Concentrating on a game requires players to combine lots of different information at once, and at times this information can be conflicting—requiring the gamer to decide which information is important.

Gaming also has mental health benefits. When the physical function of the brain is improved through many cognitive benefits, like better social skills, these changes can result in positive impacts on real-life situations.