Source: Washington state magazine

Gamers vs Non-Gamers' Brains: Differences & More

Community Jun 11, 2022

Video gaming is genuinely a very famous structure of entertainment, with video game enthusiasts jointly spending three billion hours per week in front of their screens. Due to their huge use, scientists have researched how video games have an effect on talent and behaviour. Are these outcomes fine or negative? We look at the evidence.

Growth of gaming

There is a growing focus targeted on the impact of video gaming on the brain.

At a glance, more than a hundred and fifty million in the United States alone play video games regularly, or for at least three hours per week. As per a study, a common American gamer is a 35-year-old adult, with seventy-two per cent of game enthusiasts aged 18 or older. For gaming sports used by children, most parents – seventy per cent – point out that video games have a high and intense impact on their child’s life.

Video recreation income proceeds to enlarge on a yearly basis. In 2016, the video recreation enterprise bought extra than 24.5 billion video games – up from 23.2 billion in 2015, and 21.4 billion in 2014.


The three best-selling video games of 2016 were Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare, Battlefield 1, and Grand Theft Auto V. These video games fall into the first-person shooter or action-adventure genres – these two genres accounting for 27.5 per cent and 22.5 per cent of sales, respectively.

What the Scientists have a say on this?

Scientists have been unable to establish a consensus after decades of research into video gaming and violence. Scientists have been unable to establish a link between playing video games and real-world violence.

However, a growing amount of research suggests that video gaming can alter the brain and, moreover, create changes in a variety of brain regions.

The brain reward system of in-game addicts has functional and structural alterations. Scientists recently compiled and analyzed the findings of 116 research studies in order to better understand how video games affect our brains and behaviour. Their findings were published in the journal Frontiers in Human Neuroscience.

"Games have been acclaimed and vilified in the past, with little evidence to back up the accusations. Furthermore, because gaming is such a popular activity, everyone tends to have strong feelings about it," adds Marc Palaus, a renowned psychologist who studied the common changes in the thinking approach for gaming in children and adults.

Source: Research Gate

Palaus and his colleagues wanted to see whether any trends have formed in how video games affect the structure and activity of the brain by reviewing all previous research. A total of 22 research looked at structural changes in the brain, while another 100 looked at changes in brain functions and behaviour.

Result of the findings

According to the findings, playing video games alters not just how our brains function but also their structure.

Video game use, for example, has been shown to impact attention. According to the research included in the study, video game players increase in numerous forms of attention, including sustained and selective attention. Furthermore, gamers' attention-related brain regions are more efficient than non-gamers, requiring less activation to stay focused on hard activities.

Evidence also shows that playing video games increases the size and competence of brain regions involved in visuospatial abilities, or the capacity to recognize visual and spatial relationships between objects. The right hippocampus was expanded among long-term gamers and people who agreed to follow a video game training regimen.

Source: Verywell mind

Researchers have determined that video gaming can be addictive, leading to the term "Internet gaming disorder."

The brain reward system - a set of structures related to feeling pleasure, learning, and motivation – has functional and structural changes in gaming addicts. These alterations were discovered by exposing video game addicts to game-related signals that generate cravings and analyzing their brain responses — changes that are also exhibited in other addictive illnesses.

"We looked into how the brain reacts to video game exposure," Palaus says, "but these effects don't always translate to real-life alterations." The study of the effects of video gaming is still in its early stages, and scientists are still trying to figure out which components of the game affect which brain regions and how.

"Video games are likely to have both beneficial (on attention, visual, and motor abilities) and bad (risk of addiction) elements, and it is critical that we recognize this complexity," Palaus concludes.

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