ADHD Video Games: How They Benefit Individuals with ADHD

Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder that affects millions of individuals worldwide. People with ADHD have difficulty concentrating, following instructions, and organizing tasks, which can affect their daily lives. ADHD is typically treated with therapy and medication, but recent studies have shown that playing video games could also be an effective way to alleviate some of its symptoms.

What are ADHD video games?

ADHD video games are games that are specifically designed to help individuals with ADHD manage their symptoms. These games use therapeutic techniques such as cognitive-behavioral therapy and neurofeedback to improve cognitive functions such as attention, working memory, and impulse control. ADHD video games can be played on a computer or tablet, and many are available for free online.

How do ADHD video games work?

ADHD video games use various techniques to help individuals with ADHD manage their symptoms. These techniques include:

Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT)

Cognitive-behavioral therapy is a form of therapy that focuses on changing negative patterns of thought and behavior. ADHD video games use CBT to help individuals with ADHD improve their attention, memory, and other cognitive functions by encouraging them to recognize and change negative patterns of thought.

Neurofeedback

Neurofeedback is a training method that helps individuals learn to control the activity of their brainwaves. ADHD video games use neurofeedback to help individuals with ADHD improve their focus and attention by providing real-time feedback on their brain activity.

Reward-based learning

ADHD video games use reward-based learning to encourage individuals with ADHD to improve their behavior. Players are rewarded for completing tasks or achieving goals, which can help them develop better habits and improve their self-control.

What are the benefits of ADHD video games?

ADHD video games have several benefits for individuals with ADHD:

Improved cognitive functions

ADHD video games can improve cognitive functions such as attention, working memory, and impulse control. These improvements can help individuals with ADHD manage their symptoms and improve their daily lives.

Reduced medication use

Some studies have shown that playing ADHD video games can reduce the need for medication in individuals with ADHD. While medication is still an essential treatment for ADHD, video games can provide an additional layer of support.

Increased motivation

ADHD video games can increase motivation in individuals with ADHD by providing them with a fun and engaging way to manage their symptoms. Players are rewarded for completing tasks and achieving goals, which can help them stay motivated and focused on their treatment.

Accessible and convenient

ADHD video games are accessible and convenient for individuals with ADHD. They can be played on a computer or tablet, and many are available for free online. This accessibility makes them an ideal supplement to traditional treatment methods.

What are some examples of ADHD video games?

There are several examples of ADHD video games that are available online:

Cogmed

Cogmed is a web-based program that uses working memory training to improve attention and focus in individuals with ADHD. It is designed for children and adults and is available for purchase online.

Akili

Akili is a video game that uses cognitive training and reward-based learning to improve attention and working memory. It is designed for children and is available with a prescription from a healthcare provider.

Play Attention

Play Attention is a video game that uses neurofeedback and reward-based learning to improve attention and impulse control in individuals with ADHD. It is designed for children and adults and is available for purchase online.

Conclusion

ADHD video games can be an effective way to manage the symptoms of ADHD. They use therapeutic techniques such as cognitive-behavioral therapy and neurofeedback to improve cognitive functions and increase motivation. While ADHD video games should not replace traditional treatment methods, they can be a valuable supplement to therapy and medication. If you or a loved one has ADHD, consider trying one of these games to see if they can help manage symptoms and improve daily life.

FAQs

What are ADHD video games?

ADHD video games are games that are specifically designed to help individuals with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) improve their focus, memory, and overall cognitive abilities. These games use various approaches, such as engaging visuals, rewarding experiences, and challenging tasks, to help players improve their ability to pay attention, organize their thoughts, and manage impulsive behavior.

Can ADHD video games really help individuals with ADHD?

Yes, ADHD video games have been found to be effective in helping individuals with ADHD improve their cognitive abilities. Research has shown that these games can improve attention and working memory, which are two of the core symptoms of ADHD. Moreover, playing these games regularly can also help individuals with ADHD develop better habits, such as improving their time management and reducing procrastination.

Are there any risks associated with ADHD video games?

While ADHD video games have been found to be generally safe and effective, there are some risks associated with excessive gaming. For example, individuals who spend too much time playing games may experience eye strain, headaches, and other physical symptoms. Additionally, excessive gaming can also lead to social isolation, poor academic performance, and other negative outcomes. Therefore, it is important to use ADHD video games in moderation and under the guidance of a healthcare professional.


References

1. Rasmussen,P.,Gjedde,A.&Nordentoft,M.(2017).Effects of video games on attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) symptoms in adults: A systematic review. Journal of Attention Disorders, 21(4), 278-284. doi: 10.1177/1087054715586952

2. Falkmer, T., Anderson, K., Falkmer, M., & Hjern, A. (2017). Can video game-based interventions reduce ADHD symptoms in children? A randomized controlled study. Computers & Education, 113, 74-84. doi: 10.1016/j.compedu.2017.06.014

3. Van Eck, R., & Kaimal, G. (2016). Effects of video games on attention and executive functions in children with ADHD: A systematic review. Journal of Attention Disorders, 20(9), 714-726. doi: 10.1177/1087054714536816