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Gaming mental health

Study finds gaming can benefit mental health

In a new study by the University of Oxford, scientists found that spending time playing video games can be beneficial for your mental health and general well-being. The study itself looked at the time players spent on gaming and the results on their behaviour and subjective mental health.

To conduct the study researchers used actual play time and industry data from titles such as Animal Crossing: New Horizons, Plants vs. Zombies among others. They designed a survey which measures the well-being of the players, their self-reported time spent playing and their reasons to pick up the game. 3247 players participated in the study.

The lead author of the study, professor Andrew Pryzbylski, explained their findings. “Our findings show video games aren’t necessarily bad for your health; there are other psychological factors which have a significant effect on a persons’ well-being. In fact, play can be an activity that relates positively to people’s mental health – and regulating video games could withhold those benefits from players.”

Despite the positive results, they can not be generalized to players who play other genres than the games they’ve researched. Different games from different genres might require other incentives from the players and might be played for other reasons. To solve this issue the researchers ask video game companies to share more user data with them, so they can get results for more genres of video games as well.

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Image Credit: Animal Crossing (Twitter)