How Gaming PCs Improve Mental Health & Cognitive Skills

February 28, 2024

A gaming PC is an investment, and it’s one some gamers go back and forth with. They know how much they love gaming, but they may debate internally whether their pleasure is worth the investment of a gaming laptop or a gaming computer. At Xidax, we want to reassure you that gaming is not only a legitimate hobby, but it can also improve many aspects of your life.

Gaming Desktops Improve Mental Health

CNN reported on a University of Oxford study that concluded that playing video games makes you happier. This can be accomplished in a number of ways. First, engaging in any type of escapism — whether it’s books, movies, TV, video games or another medium — is bound to improve mood. It’s called escapism because it’s a method of escaping from problems, disappointments and other negative stimuli.

While it is certainly possible to withdraw too much into escapist activities, spending much of your time worrying about issues that you have no control over anyway — such as a global pandemic — is even less healthy.

A 2019 study published in the Social Science & Medicine Journal concluded that playing video games can help with PTSD and mental health issues. Playing complex games that allow players to assume a position of leadership and in which they achieve success can help rebuild depleted self-confidence.

It can also allow players who may have suffered an injury or a permanent disability to temporarily live as they had before, for instance being able to use their arms and legs again if they cannot now.

Gaming PCs Can Help with Social Skills

The study we mentioned above was done on veterans, many of whom feel isolated and fearful when they return from combat, even if they have not suffered a physical injury. They may be afraid to go out and socialize with others.

But this fear is hardly limited to veterans. Social anxiety is real, and Mental Health America reports that 15 million Americans suffer from it — 7% of the population. Those who suffer with social anxiety disorder are at a greater risk for depression and substance abuse. Playing video games is a much healthier alternative to drugs or alcohol for relieving anxiety.

But you don’t have to have social anxiety to benefit from playing video games. Cooperative play improves social skills — this was the impetus behind the creation of kindergartens and nursery schools in the 20th century. Playing with — or even alongside — others helps build not just social skills, but also social connections with others.

Not everyone makes connections with others easily. Many people feel awkward or out of place starting or even participating in conversations. Socializing through gaming makes connecting with others so much easier. The ability to cloak yourself makes taking risks less scary.

Gaming PCs Help Relieve Social Isolation

We have probably heard more about the effects of social isolation in the last year than ever before, due to the lockdowns associated with the COVID-19 pandemic. Doctors and scientists rightly fear that the effects of the resultant isolation may continue for many years and require in-depth treatment to overcome.

Many people have wondered how the pandemic would have been different if it had occurred before internet usage became widespread. As unsatisfying as virtual meetings can sometimes be, when it is all there is, it takes on a surprising level of importance.

Soldiers deployed overseas, relatives who live far away and those who work long stretches at the far corners of the earth have relied on video chats to stay in touch with others for years. Now, everyone must do it.

When you participate in multiplayer games, it helps you stay in touch with those you can no longer visit. But even more importantly, it allows you to meet new people and forge connections you otherwise would have been unable to make. Practicing your social skills in this forum makes face-to-face communication easier. Once everyone is allowed to meet in person again, PC gamers will be at an advantage, as they have been socializing heavily all along.

Gaming Desktops Improve Cognitive Abilities

A National Institutes of Health study of Pakistani children concluded that playing video games can improve cognitive skills. The results of the study said that children who played video games regularly exhibited a “better range of cognitive abilities specifically involving analogy, processing speed, deductive reasoning and mathematical intelligence.”

It’s no secret that playing video games improves reaction time, which can help with driving, playing sports and simply staying safe (for example, jumping out of the way of an oncoming car, outmaneuvering an attacker, breaking a fall, etc.).

Playing video games is also said to aid in mental flexibility, which is the ability to change and adjust thought patterns. Skills in this area allow you to work better with colleagues and broaden your perspective so that you are better able to problem-solve.

Top Custom Gaming PC Builder

The team at Xidax hopes that our careful research has helped convince you that PC gaming is not only a valid and reasonable hobby, but a truly beneficial one as well.

Once you have graduated from consoles to a gaming desktop or a gaming laptop, it’s time to think about how a custom PC can change your life. If you love gaming and it’s truly your favorite pastime, your connection to the outside world, your therapy, you should feel comfortable investing in your future.

As a custom PC builder, we understand your needs and we’re here to fulfill them. Contact us today about building your custom gaming PC.

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