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How Gaming Can Improve Your Mental Health

    For many, gaming is more of a hobby and fun activity. However, beyond the fun, gaming can help improve your mental health. Games such as ping pong keeps your brain sharp, boosts your mood and improves your social and cognitive skills. Below are some great tips on how gaming can improve your mental health.



    • Develops Mental Acuity


    Games such as ping pong have been found to increase blood flow, and this improves the brain sharpness considerably. Studies done in Japan discovered that ping pong enhances the function of the brain’s frontal lobe which is responsible for problem solving, decision making, and voluntary movements. If you want to improve your mental acuity, know more about ping pong or other similar games.



    • Keeps Your Brain Younger


    As we get old, it is important to stay mentally healthy. Gaming is more beneficial to older people as it helps keep the brain active and reduces cognitive decline. This is because they are able to engage in simulating activities and learn new skills. According to a study done by New England Journal of Medicine, playing board games such as ping pong helps reduce the risk of diseases like dementia and Alzheimer’s.



    • Reduces Stress


    Gaming can help with relaxation, stress reduction and mental balance. This is because it relieves your mind off the worries in your life by keeping you focused on playing the game instead.



    • Improves Social Interaction


    Social interaction is of paramount importance when it comes to mental health. It helps reduce loneliness which is more likely to worsen mental health. Unfortunately, people with mental illness find it difficult to socialize and engage with the community.


    Gaming offers the perfect platform for such individuals to interact and make new friends. It allows them to step out and make new friends in a more controlled and less stressful environment.



    • Boosts Your Mood


    The activities involved in gaming have been reported to improve your mood. These activities trigger neurotransmitters, which are chemical substances responsible for transmitting signals across the brain. When the neurotransmitters levels increase, the rate of depression decreases, and this boosts your mood. What’s more, experiencing feelings of positive emotions like joy and happiness will help flourish your mental wellbeing.



    • Promotes Happy Family Relationships


    Gaming gives us the opportunity to be closer to family and friends. Most video and board games are designed to help in family cohesion and create happier relationships. Basically, board games encourage face-to-face interaction which is vital for mental health.



    • Develops Children’s Cognitive and Social Interaction


    Playing games is beneficial not only to adults but also to children. Kids are able to learn useful social skills like following rules, taking turns, being patient and sharing with others. They are also able to learn important cognitive skills like estimations and complex calculations in order to plan their next move. There are many different games that can help develop your child’s cognitive and social skills.



    • Stimulates Sections of the Brain


    Gaming stimulates the prefrontal cortex which is vital for strategic planning and shot anticipation. Another section of the brain that is stimulated by gaming is the hippocampus. The hippocampus is the only brain structure with stable birth of new brain cells. That’s why it’s a good idea to engage in aerobic exercise to stimulate the growth of brain cells and enable them to survive longer.



    • Enables Fast Decision Making


    Another benefit of gaming is that it enables faster decision-making. Research has shown that decision making skills tend to improve with playing, and this facilitates mental health. Therefore, players are able to make fast and more accurate decisions compared to non-players.



    The above are ways on how gaming can improve your mental health. Beyond the physical benefits, gaming can also have multiple mental health benefits. Games are a great way to connect with family and friends, stimulate the brain, boost mood, reduce stress and keep our brains younger.