Bad guys or good guys?Playing video games can lead to positive responses to mental health

Bad guys or good guys?Playing video games can lead to positive responses to mental health

An Oxford University study points to a positive relationship between gaming and users’ mental health; experts evaluate models and book

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Mental responses will vary depending on the dynamics, goals and tasks involved in each game

game Electronic games can be positive Mental Health User.This is the research conducted by the agency Oxford university,in England.Unlike common sense, which shows concern about the effects of gaming on young people, especially research published in November 2020 Explain that there is a small relationship In addition to the socially favorable aspects, between the entertainment model and the user’s mental health.Research analyzes how games reflect in the lives of 3,000 adult gamers, understanding the cooperative models proposed for games game It creates a “social context” that makes it a reasonable choice to live in society, explains Luiz Mafle, Ph.D. in psychology at PUC Minas and the University of Geneva. “We can understand that when there’s some cooperation and these games don’t show a lot of competition among users, it’s good because there’s something outside of the game that goes into social. In this universe, that’s a good thing. Makes contact possible, which leads to mental health benefits,” Mafle explained.

In 2018, WHO (WHO) even comes out and says “gaming disorder” is an addictive behavior and classifies addiction as a disease. However, the Oxford University study showed the opposite, albeit preliminary, with positive results for those involved. So, in fact, Is the game good or bad for the player’s psychology? The experts’ assessment is that there is no single answer to this question, as psychological responses will vary in each dynamic, in the goals and tasks involved in each stage, and in each gamification model. Psychologist Vanessa Gebrim explains that some games help with social interaction, the user’s cognitive and memory skills, spatial skills, teamwork and even decision-making, and are pointed to by psychologists as alternative therapies. “It helps with socialization and in that sense it helps a lot and there are other factors that help with video games, but to say it helps mental health is very serious because if you don’t use it in moderation, It can be harmful. In extreme cases, it can become an addiction, impair sleep and the body, and create fatigue and stress.”

Also, it’s worth noting that the study analyzed users of two games considered “social”: Nintendo’s Animal Crossing and Plants vs. Electronic Arts’ Zombies”, developed without any violent features, minimising possible negative effects on the mental health of those involved. However, violent games tend to “desensitize people to society,” and responses in research vary. “A person can capture this behavior [do jogo]in the process of social learning, and hoping to replicate it in society, is very worrying,” points out psychologist Luiz Mafle. In other words, admits Professor Andy Przybylski, director of research at the Oxford Internet Institute, that the findings do not Doesn’t mean “all video games are good” or “all gamers benefit,” but data is considered the first step toward understanding the science of gaming’s true impact on mental health. “Discussions about video games focus on The fear is that most gamers will become addicted, and our results challenge that notion. [Eles] show that gaming can be an activity that positively correlates with people’s mental health, and that gaming regulation preserves these benefits.

If the results of the science are positive, the evaluation of the game developers is also favorable. Rogério Felix, director of training and game development at game developer training school ZION, stressed that games take up “another proportion,” leaving the role of just fun, becoming a platform for simulation, training, immersion and socialization”. “I have no doubt that this will strengthen the gaming market day by day, as several studies are The ideal game, done in the right way at the right time and applied in the right way, can create great results. Our primary concern is knowing how to choose a game, this student will enjoy the workload of the game, and understanding the family culturecomplete with Felix.

The other side: reminding children

While the Oxford University study points to the well-being of adults using games, experts warn that it is necessary to understand child audienceIn children, the response to play can be reversed, explains neuroscience and child development specialists at Projeto Pigmeu Ana Macedo. In early childhood, screen use should be ineffective, and games need to focus on “the child’s motor, vocal, cognitive and social skills,” according to her. In teens, the focus is on the release in the brain of “addictive substances responsible for activating the quick-gratification system,” which can cause players to develop a false sense of predictability and control in the virtual world as opposed to the real world. This creates frustration. “The line between fun and addiction is hard to draw,” begins Ana Macedo, who points out the best games for free time. “Choose games related to language development or exploring the natural world. These games will be more productive and have more tangible benefits for healthy development,” he added.

Another necessary concern, and one of the greatest concerns for families and psychologists, is escape from reality, especially during adolescence. In other words, users use gaming as an “escape valve” for reality, a worrying situation because it limits the development of social skills and keeps individuals away from home and the so-called “real world.” “Anything we bring up to avoid social contact and the challenges that arise is very concerning because living in society always requires us to negotiate, re-fit and create new skills. Hiding behind the game can limit development. So , on the one hand, games can be positive, but if not in moderation, they can be harmful. It is useless for a person to engage in virtual contact, but to stop doing other things during the day,” emphasizes psychologist Vanessa Gebrim.

The villain and the good man: how to evaluate?

Psychologist Luiz Mafle explains that, according to experts, two points must be analyzed to assess the positive or negative impact of gaming on mental health: the style of the game and the age of the player. “There are games that propose sociality, there are games that propose competition, and there are games that propose higher individual skills, which are important to society in every moment. So, in each case, we All to see: Is this competition isolating him from society? Is it a game that seeks addiction to get people into trouble? How old is the person using the game? Are you a 7-year-old or a teen under 14? He enters Is gaming a matter of privilege or sociability? So these two points: how much gaming is created to keep people trapped in it more, to avoid social contact, and the age of the person, and then those developments are providing a higher quality to society. “

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