Is your teenager spending more and more time on their phone or computer? Perhaps they spend more time on games than you’d expect, as it seems like many children and teens these days are obsessed with video games.
However, should they really be spending so much time on these devices? Is it really that beneficial, or just a waste of valuable time?
It’s a tricky topic, but here are some things to consider when discussing gaming with your child.
Does Gaming Make You Smarter?
Most people agree that the benefits of learning outweigh the negatives, but there’s still plenty of debate around this topic.
Some believe that playing video games hinders the growth of your brain. They claim that kids who play are more likely to become violent and act impulsively, as opposed to those who spend their time outdoors and engaging in real-world tasks.
For example, in Developmental Science, kids who played video games for about nine hours a week were found to have. A greater risk of becoming aggressive. The same study also showed that those who played for 12 hours or more a week had a greater risk of antisocial behavior.
While this study focused on the negative aspects of gaming, it’s worth pointing out that most teenagers and children play games for a good reason.
In fact, there’s evidence that shows that the development of the brain is improved by learning through play.
“Playing video games can actually improve cognitive skills, such as problem-solving and decision-making, and increase cognitive function overall,” according to a 2016 study from the University of California at Berkeley, as quoted in Medical Daily.
“This means that video games can actually help children develop and grow as players.”
This article originally appeared on Teenspot.
Is Video Gaming Bad For You?
Yes, it’s possible that long-term exposure to video games could have negative effects on the brain and the eyes. But, there’s little evidence of these negative side effects and even less evidence of long-term benefits.
Some experts say video games are similar to TV and movies, and thus expose you to harmful content.