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Renjie Li, Uri Polat, Daphne Bavelier; Playing action video games enhance visual sensitivity. Journal of Vision 2008;8(6):472. doi: 10.1167/8.6.472.
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Contrast sensitivity or the ability to detect small increments in shades of gray is a main determinant of how well a person sees. This ability is notably difficult to improve through perceptual learning. Here, we show that action video games players exhibit higher contrast sensitivity across a range of spatial frequencies as well as shorter critical duration for contrast sensitivity. These changes suggest faster sensory integration following action game playing. In accord with this proposal, action video game players also exhibit substantial reductions in backward masking as compared to their non gaming peers. The causal effect of action video game playing was established through training studies, with individuals trained on an action video game showing greater improvements than those trained on a control game. This work opens new perspectives for clinical rehabilitation of patients with vision problems such as amblyopes or those with low vision.
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