Video Gaming in Africa And Its Effects on Mental Health

gamers in action

Video games are defined as electronic games which are played by electronically manipulating images produced by a computer program on a screen with the use of a console or joystick. Video games just like any game consists of different genres some include : action, sports etc. Video games are so rampant in the society that almost every Male kid is either a game freak or an occasional game player. Common video games played by Africans include Fifa, Pro Evolution Soccer (PES), Mortal Kombat, Call of Duty etc.
According to Africa is among the leading purchasers of video games worldwide. In Nigeria for example over 122 million USD was spent on video games in 2018, Egypt spent a little above 298 million USD on video games making them the highest video games in Africa. These only shows how much Africans have hopped on playing video games.

Video games just like any activity has it’s own demerits and merits. Apart from the normal problem of addiction associated with those games there are some other effects on the body as a whole. In this article we would be dwelling more on its effects on the mental health of Africans. These effects could either be positive or negative.

According to World health Organisation, mental health refers to the “State of well-being in which an individual realizes his or her own abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and is able to make a contribution to his or her community”. A whole lot of factors can affect an individual’s mental health. A problem with one’s mental health is obviously a big problem to the body’s general wellbeing because mental health deals with the brain, emotions and how it affects our day to day lives.

Mental benefits of video games are so numerous that they cannot be over emphasized. A major benefit of Video games is that is improves problem solving skills. In video games, there are specific tasks a gamer is supposed to complete in other to proceed to the next level in that game. The process of doing this overtime builds confidence and ultimately improves the gamer’s problem solving skills.

Multiplayer video games are also said to improve interpersonal relationships and engrain the spirit of teamwork in gamers. Multiplayer games are games that involve playing with friends or against friends to achieve a goal. According to statistics more than 70 percent of gamers worldwide play with a friend. With time the brain is conditioned to work in tandem with others and it would effectively encourage the virtue of unity and teamwork.

In addition, games have also been discovered to promote relaxation and to help expel anxiety. Granic in his article said “If playing video games simply makes people happier, this seems to be a fundamental emotional benefit to consider”. Completing levels in games make people very happy and it is a good way to relax and forget one’s sorrows at least for that moment.

Furthermore, another benefit is that games help build a resilient and unyielding attitude. Granic also suggested that “ By learning to cope with ongoing failures in games, gamers build emotional resilience they can rely upon in their everyday lives”. “For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction” that’s what Newton third law states. For every beneficial attribute of any activity, the abuse of that activity might lead to drastic consequences . Video games are not all good, they can as well pose some dangers to health if addiction sets in. Game addiction is a state where a gamer is very engrossed in gaming that it starts to affect his day to day activities .

One of the effects of game addiction on mental health is Insomnia. Insomnia is the inability to sleep. Often times addicted gamers find it hard to sleep without playing games or they spend their whole nights playing games because they find it hard to sleep. Another negative effect is depression, games have a positive effect on mood but when playing games in excess becomes the order of the day, soon the gamer finds it hard to adapt to his immediate environment, make friends and soon he becomes lonely and that could spiral into depression.

Gamers who play a lot of violent action games are often found to develop violent and psychotic behaviours. It has been discovered that gamers tend to re-enact the violence they perpetuate on video games in real life. A lot of studies have established a relationship between psychopathy and violent video games addiction

In a nutshell, video gaming when done in moderation helps improve an individual’s mental health and could possibly help deal with issues of suicide and depression which has been rampant recently in the African society.

Yousouph Josiah Fiyinfoluwa

If you like this article, please share with others
0 0 votes
Article Rating
Notify of
1 Comment
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Martin Goodnews
November 20, 2023 12:41 pm

My opinion is that this blog is an excellent one and I’ve benefited greatly from it. Keep up your amazing work.
In this age of technology, gaming has become an integral part of our lives, we use it to entertain ourselves and unwind from work and other daily activities. It is all fun and good until gaming becomes a major problem for you.
While it can be a source of entertainment and fun, it can also turn into an addiction for some individuals. Gaming addiction, like any other addiction, has serious consequences on your physical and mental health, relationships, and overall well-being.
There are more details on my blog. To find more, please visit the website. Don’t let this chance slip away.