Medical boffins gave 44 teens a serious load of violent games to play and then stuck their heads into a magnetic resonance imaging camera to see what parts of the teens brain were firing, if any.
The teens had no history of behaviour problems. Half of them played "Medal of Honour: Frontline" while the others played a non-violent game called "Need for Speed: Underground."
Apparently, those who played Medal of Honour used the amygdale part of the brain more. The amygdale is stimulated when there is some sort of an emotional response. However, those teens' prefrontal portions of the brain, which are associated with control, focus and concentration were switched off.
This of course worried the doctors because it is normally incredibly difficult to get an emotional response from any teenager other than a sulk or a pout.
Vincent Mathews who headed the study said that playing a certain type of violent video game may have different short-term effects on brain function than playing a non-violent, but exciting, game.
Of course, it does not mean that a teenager is going to rush out and hit someone with a softball bat. It just means that they are more emotionally involved in a game that involves blowing things up.
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