Video Games & ADHD: Does It Work?

Take a look at how playing video games can be used to counter ADHD


If your child is like most, they love video games and, contrary to what you may be thinking, that's not a bad thing. The thing is, we have been led into thinking that video games are unhealthy, distractive, and all of the above. In fact, most parents – including you – probably fret over seeing their child spend hours in front of the computer or TV playing games and, to be fair, it’s called for. However, recent studies are proving otherwise and more researchers are revealing the infinite number of benefits pegged to playing video games. Below, we take a look at how playing video games can be used to counter ADHD (Attention Deficit Disorder).

Video games and ADHD

What if you learned that some of these video games could help your child concentrate more? Well, they actually do, according to recent studies. Parents can now choose from an infinite range of video games on the market to help train their ever distracted child to pay more attention. It actually makes perfect sense if you closely look at it. Most if not all games require the user to pay close attention and focus on the objectives in order to achieve the set goals or move to the next level. According to research, a child playing video games for at least a few minutes every day learns to recognize patterns, develop strategies, solve problems, and, more importantly, focus on the task at hand.

While training ADHD patients, therapists connect the user’s brain to a mother computer through high-tech sensors in order to allow the subject to control the action on the screen – not with a keyboard or joystick, but with brain waves. By doing so, therapists are able to get valuable neurofeedback essential in treating the condition. Some may find this method scary, especially parents, but it's worth noting that neurofeedback has been in use for decades now. In fact, some of the popular games on the market trace their inception to NASA technology that is used to gauge the brain waves of pilots as they indulge in flight simulators.

Today, scientists are finding new ways to connect a computer to the brain so as to figure out its workings, especially for ADHD patients. While manufacturers are busy creating user-friendly equipment and software, it’s worth remembering that these games are only tools used to train distracted children. In other words, it is not a treatment for ADHD but rather, a training method that can be compared to brain therapy. This means that you should adopt the required gold standard ADHD treatment which is prescribed medication in conjunction with therapy.

According to Dr. Rohn Kessler, Ph.D., these active video games have the potential to significantly enhance attention stamina. The fact of the matter is the brain works more or less as any other part of the body. In order to gain muscle, you need to work out intensely and the same applies to the brain. You will have play games in order to work it out and boost its cognitive abilities, memory, and attention. Most of the games nowadays on the market designed for high-tech consoles such as the Xbox One or Playstation 4 can indeed go a long way in countering the symptoms pegged to the condition. In order to move to the next level, these games require a lot of focus to find hidden items and in fact, can keep gamers locked in for months.

The simple fact is that video games require children to pay close attention in order to achieve goals, making them perfect for ADHD patients.



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