Now this sounds interesting. After having read the actual report, it’s quite a mild surprise too. Turns out a group of European scientists may have debunked the whole ‘video game addiction’ conundrum. Emphasis on the word ‘may’ because the actual experiment that produced the startling results still leave some questions unanswered.
The magic phrase for this particular study is ‘dorsal striatum.’ It’s the pleasure centre of the brain and the funny part is it tends to enlarge given the right stimulus. In fact, a healthy appreciation for gastronomic delights contributes to a large dorsal striatum.
The dorsal striatum figured prominently in the experiments conducted by a Berlin-based scientist who led a team examining a number of teenagers. What they first did was classify the casual gamers from the more enthusiastic ones (the latter put in 20 plus hours a week into console diversion). Then next they did MRI scans that revealed differences in dorsal striatum sizes—turns out the more intense gamers had larger pleasure spots in their heads. Then the teenagers were made to play a simple incentivized game involving a small monetary award. The result was also startling, since the avid gamers who lost ended up more motivated to play, their dorsal striatums going in overdrive. It’s like getting killed in a Call of Duty mission and wanting to start over again until you get it right. It’s a familiar feeling.
If you have several minutes to spare, go ahead and read the source link. It’s fascinating stuff.
Source ABC Science
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