Scientists at the Irish Science Foundation’s Software Research Center argue that games can positively influence the treatment of mental illnesses such as depression, anxiety disorder, schizophrenia or alleviate their symptoms. The resource TJournal writes about this concerning the study results, published in JMIR Serious Games magazine.
The researchers examined previous research papers on the effects of computer games on people’s mental health. The number of mental disorders and illnesses has increased significantly over the past two years due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Experiments have shown that computer games alleviate the course of such diseases within 30 minutes of a game session. Moreover, this effect does not depend on the level of the player. Here the main role is played by successes in passing the game, overcoming obstacles, and the visual component – the richer and more colorful the picture, the better the result. All of this improves mood and creates a sense of pleasure.
The study’s authors concluded that shooters, role-playing, and online games improve socialization and reduce feelings of loneliness, while fitness games and platform games improve cognitive abilities, alleviate dyslexic symptoms and reduce anxiety. In addition, games of all genres can boost your mood and help you cope with intense feelings.
The advantage of this method of dealing with mental illness is that it is cheaper and more accessible than medical care. In addition, it avoids the negative opinion of others, who usually have a negative attitude towards those who receive mental health care.