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Why Video Games Are Beneficial to Your Health

by College and Career Advantage

Video games aren’t just about fun and games – they’ve got some surprising health benefits too. For starters, video games are like a mental gym. Playing games sharpens your problem-solving skills and strategic thinking whether you’re doing an online crossword or battling monsters with your trusty sword. It’s like giving your brain a solid workout.

Plus, they’re fantastic for improving hand-eye coordination. One example of a game that requires a brain and some aim is a game called Valorant. It demands quick reflexes, precise movements, and quick and strategic thinking which can help you in real life scenarios. For example, I do gymnastics competitively, and playing video games helps improve my hand eye coordination. Let’s not forget the benefit of online puzzles and games like sudoku, too. If you want to improve your ability to untangle puzzles, then making sure that you are playing games that actually challenge you is super important.

There is also a social aspect while playing games since you team up with friends or make new ones, coordinating strategies and communicating effectively.

Surprisingly, video games can even help with pain management and stress relief. When you’re immersed in a game, it can divert your attention from discomfort, acting as a form of distraction therapy. This is why when you are playing an engaging video game it’s easy to lose your sense of time because it is so fun. This can be a bad thing, but if you are going through a rough time, and you want to focus on something else, just play video games. Additionally, the intense focus required in gaming can induce a state of relaxation and ultimately reduce stress levels.

Let’s not forget about creativity. Games with open worlds or creative modes such as Minecraft or Terraria offer a platform for self-expression. You can build, design, and even tell your own stories. It’s like having a digital canvas at your disposal.

Lastly, games provide a sense of accomplishment. Overcoming challenges and achieving in-game goals can boost confidence and motivation. These feelings of achievement can carry over into your everyday life, spurring a positive outlook and a willingness to tackle challenges. My goal while playing Valorant is to hit Radiant, and if I do that, I would be so hyped.

So, when approached mindfully and in moderation, video games can offer a range of unexpected health benefits, from cognitive enhancement to improved social skills and stress relief. It’s not just entertainment – it’s an investment in your well-being.

By Mateo Galitzen, Laguna Beach High School, Class of 2025

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