In our day and age, the most popular pastime activities include a screen of some sort. While some enjoy the movies or watching TV, others prefer to use their smartphones or computers to access the best poker sites out there.
People used to believe that spending so much time in front of screens can only be harmful to the player’s mental and physical health. However, the positive effects such activities had on the players were largely overlooked.
In the past decade, experts focused on uncovering the effects intense gaming schedules have, and some of them even focused specifically on online poker. It is time to discover, once and for all, how playing poker online can affect you!
All You Need to Know
Poker players, in general, are required to have an assortment of skills to be good at what they do. Playing poker means that you need to have laser focus, dedication, quick problem-solving abilities, and the ability to recover from failure.
Some poker players are lucky, as they acquired all those skills at a younger age for some reason or another.
Used to facing unpredictable situations, they are already halfway to becoming pro players. However, not all poker players were born the same, and some of them need to work harder to be able to deal with the stress that comes with playing online poker.
When you think about it, obtaining all the said skills might not be easy, but not impossible. But even more than that, if you practice enough, you will also be able to use the same skills in other areas of life.
How is that possible, you ask? Well, it all comes down to one main factor: our brain. In the neurological field, there is a term called neuroplasticity, which means that your brain is constantly changing. Everything you experience and learn has the potential to create actual changes in your brain pathways.
That means that even if you weren’t good at making fast decisions or calculating odds before, it is not the end of the world, as your brain can evolve. It may take months, and even years, for you to be able to perform all those skills effortlessly and on an automatic level. However, once you manage to acquire a certain skill, the risk of forgetting it are quite low.
In fact, under some conditions, you will be able to transfer those skills from the poker table to real life, which is a big plus.
However, playing too much online poker might have negative effects as well. In some cases, poker players who are used to playing multiple games at once find it hard to concentrate on one single task when they are away from the table.
Other players might find themselves unable to stop betting when they run out of money, which can turn in a major issue. In the past, several studies found that you could see actual changes in brain function of poker players with a gambling problem.
Researchers say that the brain areas associated with attention, visual processing, and auditory processing become more activated the more you’re at risk for developing a gambling problem.
According to those studies, when a player dedicates too much of his time and attention to the game, his brain starts changing, needing more vigorous stimulation to feel satisfied.
But according to experts, as long as you manage to keep yourself in check and allocate time for other recreational activities, you won’t have to worry about this.
Playing poker can affect your brain – there is no doubt about it, but there is still room for asking: what kind of change will it be? Positive or negative?
In reality, it all comes down to you. So stay responsible, and player to your heart’s desire without going overboard!