New Study Finds NO Notable Links Between Gaming and Mental Wellbeing

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Back in 2020, research conducted by the Oxford Internet Institute research suggested that gaming was, overall, good for your mental health. Pooling around 3,000 people, it concluded that people who game on a relatively moderate basis would be more inclined to say that they felt good when asked than people who didn’t. The important factor to this was that it debunked previous research (from pretty much the prior 40 years) that indicated that gaming could only likely have a negative effect on mental health.

Following a new report via the BBC, however, a more extensive study has just been published, and, overall, it suggests something new. In a nutshell, gaming doesn’t appear to have an effect on mental health one way or the other!

Well… that’s ok I guess.

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Research Shows Gaming Has No Discernable Impact on Mental Health

This time around the new study, again conducted by the same people at the Oxford Internet Institute, took results from circa 39,000 participants (clearly a massively wider pool). Taking into account such things as life satisfaction and general emotional factors such as happiness, sadness, anger, fear, and frustration, the research concluded that (in most cases) gaming will have neither a positive nor negative effect on your overall mental health.

Put simply, it is (in most cases) neither seemingly beneficial nor detrimental to how you generally feel. Or, in other words, gaming is mostly neither good nor bad for us.

And no, just to get one elephant out of the room, it doesn’t seem that the type of game being played really played a notable factor either.

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With that Being Said – Nothing Exceeds Like Excess…

The only clear exception to this new study is when things are taken to extremes (as per most addictions). The research concluded that people who game for more than 10 hours a day were increasingly likely to start potentially seeing detrimental mental health effects from it. A particular factor in this was the feeling of being ‘required’ to play (like a job) rather than wanting to play (as in recreation). And, in fairness, this was the exact reason why I stopped playing games like World of Warcraft.

While we will, of course, wait for the latest scandal to suggest that gaming is turning us all into homicidal maniacs, for the moment at least we can say one thing fairly confidently. Gaming isn’t apparently good for us, but unless taken to extremes, it’s also not apparently bad for us either!

And on that note, I’m off to play Elden Ring.

What do you think? – Let us know in the comments!

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