Hey all of you gamers out there! Do you ever feel a rush of adrenaline and a sense of intensity whenever you play video games? Why do we feel so immersed and focused whenever we play video games. That is just the question we are yet to answer.
To find the truth behind this sensation, the High School Science Club set out and begun a research experiment on different age groups, ranging from high schoolers (16-18 years old) and adults (50-55 years). Each volunteer was asked to play two different games which had varying genres meant to have different levels of focus and skill needed. Each volunteer had their heart rate, blood pressure and pain tolerance measured before, during, and after playing to see if playing video games really did have an effect on the human body. Blood pressure and heart rate were monitored using a digital monitor tied on the wrist. Pain tolerance was measured by pricking a pin several times on their arm and recording the counts they sensed. The measurements were compared to their resting state observations.
Line graphs were plotted for all the parameters to have a comparative insight of the variations. Some sample graphs have been shown herewith. The data evidently represented that all the tested parameters show higher variations during the test conditions as compared to the resting stage (control condition). Also, it was clearly noticed that volunteers in the teens group showed higher fluctuations in their heart rate and blood pressure while the older volunteers tend to have more stability in their basic parameters. This may also be attributed to the varying interest levels in people of different age groups.
Though the data was divergent for different volunteers, making it inappropriate to quantify the results as an average effect of video games. But overall trend in the data suggests, that there is a significant fluctuation in your heart rate and blood pressure along with a decrease in your pain sensitivity while playing video games. Even though your body isn’t actually moving when you play video games, adrenal medulla gland releases hormones and adrenaline due to the amount of focus paid to the game. Some effects are also visible like dilation of pupils to enhance focus for the game.
It can be concluded that a prolonged use of such games, may result in severe complications. These blood pressure variations may be mild for the moment but may have a long term effect on the body. So, we must advise young generations to use these activities only for leisure rather than an addictive routine.
Study conducted by: Layan Salameh (Gr11), John Michael Magallanes (Gr10), Marcel Improta (Gr10) and Sobaan Basharat (Gr10)
Supervisor: Mrs. Neha Pachisia