Over the last 9 years, research analysts from different universities around the world have been carrying out studies aimed at finding out the specific effects of video games on both the children and adults. From these research studies, it emerged that video games may have positive and negative effects depending on the situation at hand and the type of game that is being played. One major problem that has been pointed out by different research analysts is the fact that video games may cause addiction in the brain leading to confusion between reality and fiction. They say that this may occur in both children and adults but the occurrence rate will be wholly determined by the number of hours per day that is spent on the games (Bryant 132).
In addition, it is clear that over 53% of the video game addicts are aged between 18 and 42 years most of whom have a low socialization level and spend most of their time on the internet searching for new games to play (Bryant 156). Video game manufacturers, on the other hand, have been able to record huge profit margins over the last decade due to the increase in the number of people who play the games either online or at home. Some of the video manufacturers that have been able to record huge profits from the sale of video games are Microsoft and Sony. There are positive and negative effects that are mainly associated with video games among the children and the adults some of whom have become completely addicted to the games.
Although video games have been associated with the negative effects especially among the children, they can also have positive effects depending on their use. The first major positive effect that the video games may have is the rehabilitation of post-stroke patients who suffer from motor problems. Using the video games, different doctors have been able to improve the hand-eye coordination of the patients considering that most of the games will require the player to move and observe at the same time (Buckley 21). In addition, the patients are also taught on how to coordinate the brain’s interpretations by reacting with movements on their finger tips and hands. This will help to improve the motor ability and the spatial skills of the patient thereby helping in the rehabilitation process. Secondly, the video games help in improving the reading and mathematics skills in children since when playing, the child will have to read the instructions given and thereafter calculate the number of points that gained, which will help in improving their skills drastically (Buckley 25).
Thirdly, a study that was carried out in the United Kingdom showed that most the video game addicts that were interviewed had very high rates of concentration thus the fact that video games help to improve the concentration levels (Jeon 495). This may be very important in children because they need to learn how to concentrate especially during their study so as to gaining enough knowledge that may help them in the future. In workplaces, adults are encouraged to play video games more frequently because it improves teamwork and concentration. Some of the games require a lot of teamwork from the player, which may be helpful for the different organizations. This may help the worker to understand how to work in a team, as well as, understand the different roles to play while in the team (Russell 296).
Among the children, video games are also regarded to be very important because they help to increase their memory as some of the games that are played will require that the player has to store different information that will be necessary at a later stage in the game. This will help the child to improve the ability to select the information that is required in the working memory and the information that is to be discarded. For child development, this is considered to be a very important factor that has to be taken into a lot of consideration. Some of the adults interviewed during the different studies said that the video games have helped them learn how to multitask when performing different tasks considering that in some of the games that have been developed in recent years; the player has to perform one task while anticipating a reaction to it (Russell 307). This is a very important factor especially for the adults in administrative positions who have to make different decision while at the same time anticipate for the different reactions that may be encountered. The video games may, on the other hand, help adults in administrative positions to make quick decisions by analyzing the given situations, which is a factor that a player must consider when playing the video games. The player must be a fast analyzing person who is able to analyze the situation and make a quick decision, which is a characteristic that administrators must portray.
Video games help to give adults and children situational awareness in that a player must be fully aware of the kind of situation that he / she is in so as to be able to gain the maximum points that are needed in the game. In different countries around the world, video games have been used to train soldiers of how aware they need to be while in battle while taking into consideration all the necessary factors. The games also help the soldiers to develop accuracy when performing different tasks that are required of them. This has also been backed by different scientists dealing with the brain of human beings.
The first major effect that has been associated with video games is the high levels of depression especially among the adults. Most of the video game players lack the ability to socialize with other people thus use most of their time playing video games, which lead to an increase in depression later resulting to hypertension (Sneed 38). Research analysts have said that when playing video games, adults are more prone to lose and in process they may end up feeling low about themselves, which is the first cause of depression. On the other hand, the video game player will record high levels of BMI considering that they spend most of their time seated with no or little exercise thus leading to the pilling up of calories in their bodies translating to an increase in BMI. This is also a major factor that has been associated with hypertension among the adults. Among the children, video games have been associated with low performance levels in academics considering that a child may spend most of his / her time on video games and may neglect academic study(Jeon 510).
The child may also become socially isolated as a result of spending less time interacting with other children or concentrating on other fields, such as sports and reading, thus the child may end up feeling isolated from the family and from the society in general. This may not be very healthy for the general development of the child who may need a lot of attention when growing up. Another major effect that has been pointed out clearly by different research analysts is the fact that video games may tend to confuse the player between reality and fantasy considering that a player may spend more than 10 hours a day on video games (Sneed 40). This may be very unhealthy for the child’s brain development in the sense that the brain will always be focused on games and not on the reality of things. This factor may also affect the adults in that one may not be able to handle real life situations that may occur or may end up basing his decisions on a video game that he / she has played for a long time. Video games may also teach the children wrong values because in many video games, the player is awarded for vengeance and aggression leading to violence among the children.
Although some studies have shown that video games are important in improving a child’s concentration levels, other studies have shown that these concentration levels may only last for short periods of time and in the long term, the child may lose concentration completely. In other words, the ability to concentrate based on video games may be a short term solution but may damage the long term concentration of the child. Video games are also associated with different health hazards, such as obesity and video-induced seizures (Sneed 48). These are very serious effects that can affect the general development of child. Skeletal disorders are also factors that may affect children and adults considering that video game addicts may end up with disorders, such as tendonitis, nerve compression, and carpal tunnel syndrome (Sneed 55). Video games are also considered to be addictive and through this addiction a child may end up picking up impulsive behaviors towards other people and end up using bad language when addressing different people. These are very serious effects that must be considered by different video game addict.
In conclusion, video games have been seen to have positive effects on both adults and children but at the same time they have been seen to have very serious negative effects. As discussed in this research paper, video games may help in improving a child development in terms of brain function but according to different researches this may only be a short term effect that may damage the child in the long run. Video games have also been used by different adults especially in workplaces to improve on different factors, such as teamwork and situational awareness but at the same time, the video games have been found to cause different health hazards to the adults. These hazards may include tendonitis, nerve compression, and carpal tunnel syndrome. It is very important to consider the positive and negative effect of video games before deciding on playing them.
Bryant, Jennings. Playing Video Games: Motives, Responses, and Consequences. London, UK: John Wiley and Sons, 2012. Print
Buckley, Katherine. Violent Video Game Effects on Children and Adolescents. New York, NY: Springer, 2007. Print.
Jeon, Seong. ‘The Effect of Video Game Training on the Vision of Adults with Bilateral Deprivation Amblyopia.’ Seeing & Perceiving 25.5 (2012): 493-520. Print.
Russell, William. ‘Short-Term Psychological Effects of Interactive Video Game Technology Exercise on Mood and Attention.’ Journal of Educational Technology & Society 11.2 (2008): 294-308. Print.
Sneed, Carl. ‘The beliefs adults and children hold about television and video games.’ Journal of Psychology 35.1 (2008): 37-56. Print.