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5 Mind-blowing Health Benefits Of Playing Mobile Games

5 Mind-blowing Health Benefits Of Playing Mobile Games

Playing video games is well known to provide certain health benefits—from reducing depression, to relieving stress and even creating a general good feeling. While this might sound like an outrageous claim, there are lots of available evidence to support it. This has led many to incorporate video games into their regular lives. Allocating a bit of time to playing games can improve your mental health in a lot of amazing ways.

This topic is quite controversial, as there is evidence from researches and studies, to support and oppose the claims made. However, the research supporting the benefits of video games[1] would be difficult and really irresponsible to ignore. The following are some of the benefits of online video games:

1. They improve moods

There are few better ways to boost one’s mood than the feeling of victory[2] that comes with knowing you have finally figured out a difficult mobile video game level and completed the game successfully.

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This usually comes with games that involve users trying to find their ways around demolishing the enemy’s Crown Towers, like in Clash Royale Gemmes, where users have an excellent visual approach and are equipped with great mechanics.

In addition, playing mobile games can help to keep anxiety at bay and promote relaxation. If just by playing video mobile games, people get happier, then why would anyone ever dispute the emotional benefits?

2. They train the brain

As it relates to boosting brain power,[3] online bingo and certain other games are successful in this. Spatial awareness is enhanced (thanks to different bingo games such as 75 ball bingo where users have to look at different horizontal, diagonal and vertical patterns in order to win the game). Additionally, playing these games regularly can help increase memory capacity. Tasks such as keeping track of different bingo cards as well as focusing on the numbers called out during a game can greatly aid mental stimulation.

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3. Age does not really matter

Old or young, learning to play mobile video games[4] is quite easy. The gaming companies are continuously developing games, designed to target youngsters and unlock their potentials. Racing games especially are aimed at the young. Users can tilt their handheld devices to imitate the actions of a real steering wheel. These games equip younger users with the ability to improve on their driving skills.

Racing cars also allows the youngsters to work on their smaller muscle groups. This allows them to reach important and necessary milestones, which can help their cognitive development.

4. They enhance wellbeing

Playing mobile video games allow and enable users to engage in a sense of escapism, since these games require full engagement and deep concentration.

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Games have specific ways of ticking all the boxes necessary for successful training of the brain. This is true especially for games users play against the clock. These games get users to focus, think faster and also think flexibly.[5]

By exercising all these skills, which most of the time are very challenging, you can improve your overall well-being. Companies like WonderTree[6] are even redefining special education with augmented reality games.

5. They build social communities

Certain games help users build a social community[7] such as Chess With Friends and Wordfeud. These games allow users to chat with strangers or friends as they play against them.

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Another study discovered that people with autism are usually more engaged when they are celebrating victory as they share space with multiple players.[8] Lack of communication is usually a hard issue for those with autism, but increased social interaction from games that involve multiple players can help them.

With the above, you can defend yourself proudly when anyone asks you the benefits of mobile games.

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via pexels.com

Reference

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Zuhair Sharif

Digital Marketer

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Last Updated on June 6, 2019

Science Says Silence Is Much More Important To Our Brains Than We Think

Science Says Silence Is Much More Important To Our Brains Than We Think

In 2011, the Finnish Tourist Board ran a campaign that used silence as a marketing ‘product’. They sought to entice people to visit Finland and experience the beauty of this silent land. They released a series of photographs of single figures in the nature and used the slogan “Silence, Please”. A tag line was added by Simon Anholt, an international country branding consultant, “No talking, but action.”

Eva Kiviranta the manager of the social media for VisitFinland.com said: “We decided, instead of saying that it’s really empty and really quiet and nobody is talking about anything here, let’s embrace it and make it a good thing”.

Finland may be on to something very big. You could be seeing the very beginnings of using silence as a selling point as silence may be becoming more and more attractive. As the world around becomes increasingly loud and cluttered you may find yourself seeking out the reprieve that silent places and silence have to offer. This may be a wise move as studies are showing that silence is much more important to your brains than you might think.

Regenerated brain cells may be just a matter of silence.

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     A 2013 study on mice published in the journal Brain, Structure and Function used differed types of noise and silence and monitored the effect the sound and silence had on the brains of the mice.[1] The silence was intended to be the control in the study but what they found was surprising. The scientists discovered that when the mice were exposed to two hours of silence per day they developed new cells in the hippocampus. The hippocampus is a region of the brain associated with memory, emotion and learning.

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    The growth of new cells in the brain does not necessarily translate to tangible health benefits. However, in this instance, researcher Imke Kirste says that the cells appeared to become functioning neurons.

    “We saw that silence is really helping the new generated cells to differentiate into neurons, and integrate into the system.”

    In this sense silence can quite literally grow your brain.

    The brain is actively internalizing and evaluating information during silence

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      A 2001 study defined a “default mode” of brain function that showed that even when the brain was “resting” it was perpetually active internalizing and evaluating information.

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      Follow-up research found that the default mode is also used during the process of self-reflection. In 2013, in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, Joseph Moran et al. wrote, the brain’s default mode network “is observed most closely during the psychological task of reflecting on one’s personalities and characteristics (self-reflection), rather than during self-recognition, thinking of the self-concept, or thinking about self-esteem, for example.

      “When the brain rests it is able to integrate internal and external information into “a conscious workspace,” said Moran and colleagues.

      When you are not distracted by noise or goal-orientated tasks, there appears to be a quiet time that allows your conscious workspace to process things. During these periods of silence, your brain has the freedom it needs to discover its place in your internal and external world.

      The default mode helps you think about profound things in an imaginative way.

      As Herman Melville once wrote,[2]

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      “All profound things and emotions of things are preceded and attended by silence.”

      Silence relieves stress and tension.

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        It has been found that noise can have a pronounced physical effect on our brains resulting in elevated levels of stress hormones. The sound waves reach the brain as electrical signals via the ear. The body reacts to these signals even if it is sleeping. It is thought that the amygdalae (located in the temporal lobes of the brain) which is associated with memory formation and emotion is activated and this causes a release of stress hormones. If you live in a consistently noisy environment that you are likely to experience chronically elevated levels of stress hormones.

        A study that was published in 2002 in Psychological Science (Vol. 13, No. 9) examined the effects that the relocation of Munich’s airport had on children’s health and cognition. Gary W. Evans, a professor of human ecology at Cornell University notes that children who are exposed to noise develop a stress response that causes them to ignore the noise. What is of interest is that these children not only ignored harmful stimuli they also ignored stimuli that they should be paying attention to such as speech. 

        “This study is among the strongest, probably the most definitive proof that noise – even at levels that do not produce any hearing damage – causes stress and is harmful to humans,” Evans says.[3]

        Silence seems to have the opposite effect of the brain to noise. While noise may cause stress and tension silence releases tension in the brain and body. A study published in the journal Heart discovered that two minutes of silence can prove to be even more relaxing than listening to “relaxing” music. They based these findings of changes they noticed in blood pressure and blood circulation in the brain.[4]

        Silence replenishes our cognitive resources.

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          The effect that noise pollution can have on cognitive task performance has been extensively studied. It has been found that noise harms task performance at work and school. It can also be the cause of decreased motivation and an increase in error making.  The cognitive functions most strongly affected by noise are reading attention, memory and problem solving.

          Studies have also concluded that children exposed to households or classrooms near airplane flight paths, railways or highways have lower reading scores and are slower in their development of cognitive and language skills.

          But it is not all bad news. It is possible for the brain to restore its finite cognitive resources. According to the attention restoration theory when you are in an environment with lower levels of sensory input the brain can ‘recover’ some of its cognitive abilities. In silence the brain is able to let down its sensory guard and restore some of what has been ‘lost’ through excess noise.[5]

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          Summation

          Traveling to Finland may just well be on your list of things to do. There you may find the silence you need to help your brain. Or, if Finland is a bit out of reach for now, you could simply take a quiet walk in a peaceful place in your neighborhood. This might prove to do you and your brain a world of good.

          Featured photo credit: Angelina Litvin via unsplash.com

          Reference

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