Video games can grow or shrink your brain, study finds
Does your brain feel a little lighter or heavier this week? It could be because of your gaming habits.
A recent study on video games hosted by the University of Montreal took a group of people and subjected them to either first-person shooters or Super Mario Bros. It turns out that there was “statistically significant” less grey matter in the hippocampus after 10 weeks than those who indulged in FPS games than platformers, who actually gained more.
So what does this mean? The researchers speculated on why some video games cause growth while others incur shrinkage in the old noggin’. One theory is that action games’ navigation systems do the thinking for the players in favor of a reward system. Platformers may require more active thought to navigating obstacles while FPS are more about reflexes in linear fights.
Still, there’s not really any cause for concern. “I would never interpret this finding as a big warning against action video games,” a neural plasticity researcher Simone Kuhn says.