Sunday, April 21, 2019

Video games, the pluses and minuses

By Dr. Michelle Colder Carras
Dr. Michelle Colder Carras
Dr. Michelle Colder Carras

The Entertainment Software Association’s 2018 Essential Facts About the Computer and Video Game Industry reports that over 150 million Americans play video games, 60% of them playing daily. Video game play has been shown to provide cognitive benefits, improving basic mental abilities such as attention and executive functioning.

However, there is also a negative side to video gaming. In 2018, the World Health Organization (WHO) identified “gaming disorder” in the 11th Revision of its International Classification of Diseases (ICD-11).

Dr. Michelle Colder Carras’s presentation, titled “Video games, social interactions, and mental health: Benefits and problems,” will be the 1-1:45pm (Pacific time) session on Friday, April 26 at Virtual Ability’s annual Mental Health Symposium. Dr. Colder Carras is a public mental health researcher and informaticist who specializes in healthy and problematic media and technology use. Her most recent work has focused on how commercial video games can be useful for suicide prevention and improved mental health.

Dr. Colder Carras will discuss the importance of determining the context of game play in deciding if it is helpful or harmful. She will examine both online and offline social interactions by video gamers, and will discuss both potential therapeutic benefits and problematic issues related to gaming.

For more information about the Mental Health Symposium and the full schedule of sessions:

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