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What is it About Games that Helps You Live Longer?

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Extensive research has been conducted into various interactive activities and how they can impact your longevity.

At times, the studies have generated spurious assertions between certain activities and their correlation on healthy living. What is undeniable however is that immersive, engaging, and enriching entertainment can significantly improve the quality of your life, by evoking sensory parameters.

Various games are known to generate high levels of activity in the cerebrum, such as crossword puzzles, Scrabble, chess, backgammon, battleships, and other strategy-based games such as blackjack or poker. While there is no common thread between the individual games that require mental acuity, the level of engagement with the user is what drives electrical impulses in the brain.

Part of the problem with getting older, is getting lazier. This is oftentimes attributed to lack of mental stimulation once a person is no longer active in the workforce, or interacting with friends and family daily. Gaming, and related activities, have a propensity to hyper-stimulate the senses, through the visual and thought processes.

Certain games evoke additional stimulation from the audio sensory parameters such as bingo games at a traditional bingo hall, or an online bingo room. The games require a degree of focus from the player. From registration through ticket purchase, players need to engage with other players (chat functionality, chat moderators), follow the bingo caller with manual daubing of bingo tickets, or opt for autodaub functionality and manage multiple tickets simultaneously.

In each instance, the multi-player nature of the experience results in higher levels of concentration, and a laser focus on the task at hand. Over the years, Alzheimer’s patients have been shown to have delayed onset of symptoms when their minds are kept active. According to various studies, there are age/stage appropriate recreational activities that Alzheimer’s patients can participate in to ensure greater mental sharpness for a prolonged period of time. Short-term cognition in Alzheimer’s patients has also been helped with physical intervention and bingo games. Multiple corroborating stories to this effect have been documented.

How Important Is Social Interaction in Games for Mental Health?

The impact of healthy gaming activity and mental health, longevity and general well-being has been the subject of many a study. Over the years, there have been many improvements in Parkinson’s disease patients, Alzheimer’s disease patients, and even people on the autism spectrum. Studies conclude that the aging process leads to a loss of sensitivity in contrasts.

People with dementia reportedly have increased problems in this regard. Licensed mental health counselor, Phyllis Hart EDD believes that the right games can evoke positive changes in mental health and physical well-being, ‘We have conducted several case studies that show a positive correlation between mental stimulation through gaming, and well-being. Provided the games are healthy activities, you can see a marked improvement in mood, behaviour and sharpness.’

The social interaction component of online gaming is well-established. Today multiplayer online games such as RPGs, MMO games, mulitiplayer card games, etc. encourage interaction in otherwise insular people. The stay-at-home approach to gaming for introverts allows them to enjoy the company of others where they might not typically do so. For example, disabled people, hermits, or people with hectic work schedules may not find the time to frequent a land-based gaming establishment such as bowling, mini golf, arcade halls, Pachinko parlours and the like.

Today, there are a myriad of exciting alternatives available where players can practice strategy-based card games, table games and even fun-filled slot games from the comforts of home. These games are available in an instant-play mode with zero risk, and maximum immersion. Of course, all games should be enjoyed in a responsible manner where safety and security is assured – whether online or at a traditional venue.

 

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