The novel COVID-2019 pandemic has turned our life upside down. Nothing is like it was. Millions of people all over the glove seem to be getting used to a standstill that their routine has turned into. Together with the necessity to learn to work remotely, most individuals find themselves not knowing how to pass the free time they have while quarantining at home.
According to the research “The Impact of COVID-19 Lockdown on Internet Use and Escapism in Adolescents,” even before the lockdown was imposed by the governments all over the globe, studies have shown high use of the internet and social media among adolescents. However, NPD Group’s monthly report showed that video games see a 35% increase while the population of the United States quarantined at home. Needless to say that college and university undergrads were among those who chose video games as a source of fun that is within reach 24/7. In fact, various online essay writing companies like CustomWritings.com report a significant increase among the students who approach them for help during stay-at-home time. This is explained by the fact that young people are being completely submerged in the screen reality. As shown by WinZo Games, an Indian-based gaming company, user engagement in the gaming industry was three times higher while online mobile gaming had 30% higher traffic.
How Much Gaming Is…Too Much?
In 2018, the World Health Organization included an addiction to video games into the list of modern diseases. However, by its nature, a video game is not an addictive thing. What is more, as it’s been mentioned before, playing games can help you become a better writer, improve manual dexterity, and even increase your brain’s gray matter. But the reality is that once we start pathologizing healthy game routines, we face a serious risk of getting anxiety and damage to communication, social, and cognitive skills.
So, on to the question – how much gaming is too much? Here’s where all disputes pop up. Jean M. Twenge, a professor of psychology at San Diego State University, states that 1-2 hours per day is more than enough.
Regardless of the time spent on gaming, keep in mind that you should start playing only after you cope with other responsibilities of the day. Are you supposed to be writing a cause and effect essay or dealing with some household chores? Make sure to check the quality of the accomplished paper and chores before you allow yourself to dive into the world of consoles and pixels. Remember, playing games is a privilege during the pandemic – not the main course on a plate.
How about the Benefits?
Although digital games are often dismissed as a kind of addiction, these simulated worlds offer some tangible benefits in real life. According to some studies, some digital games boost mood and relieve stress. The latter is explained by better heart rhythm among the players. It’s no wonder that video games have been part of therapy for years. Besides, electronic games are a fun way to develop a genuine interest in learning. Since there are video games on anything, you can easily use them to boost your math or language skills. Today, e-games incorporate the fields like architecture, cooking, world history, biology, chemistry, and many other topics that you need some guidance with.
If you happen to lack persistence, video games can teach you some. As you play, you either become a winner or you lose and have to try again and again. In other words, you learn from the mistakes that you make. You progress. Finally, you reach the goal. In the process, you learn to be more confident and never give up as you move towards your career, academic, or personal goals. In this case, each misstep is taken as just one more opportunity to learn (and enjoy the game, after all!).
Firing up your favorite console or computer game makes you better at problem-solving. The more gamers reported playing strategic and role-playing digital games, the more they progressed in problem-solving and college grades, as a result.
In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic and self-isolation, digital games become one of the ways to stay physically active. While staying at home doesn’t provide many alternatives to sitting down, most major consoles now get you off of your bed and make you move. What is more, many developers have already started their work on creating products that will make you move across physical space, virtually putting you into the real-world simulated location. The gamers will be inspired to relocate to have an opportunity to boost their virtual territory.
Finally, video gaming teaches you some important tech skills. Technology is an inseparable part of today’s reality. Whether you choose a real-world or an alternate reality game, you get to know some basic skills like programming and coding. Taking into account the fact that Information Technology is the fastest growing industry in the world, the students may benefit from the tech skills that they develop without having to attend IT courses in college or university.
As video games evolve to be one of the most popular types of media through which students communicate, they are associated with several health issues. Pathological gaming affects the quality of sleep that may end with sleep deprivation. However, in a situation like the global lockdown, where undergrads just have fewer opportunities to have fun and interact socially, video games provide a virtual space where they don’t have to worry about social-distancing. After all, there’s a whole universe where you don’t wear face masks and persistent anxiety doesn’t affect your day-to-day life.
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