A team of researchers from the University of Cambridge has developed a brain training game which can enhance users’ concentration and provide an antidote against daily distractions from the outer world. As the new technologies which has emerged as an essential part of our lives, requires rapid responses to email and texts and multi-tasking, creating it difficult to maintain attention, according to a study published in the journal Frontiers in Behavioural Neuroscience.
In the book The Distracted Mind: Ancient Brains in a High-Tech World, Adam Gazzaley and Larry D. Rosen pointed out this theory in the study published that this quick responses and multi-tasking creates problems in sustaining attentions and leads to frequent distraction.
Professor Barbara Sahakian, professor in University of Cambridge said, "We've all experienced coming home from work feeling that we've been busy all day, but unsure what we actually did’’.
"Most of us spend our time answering emails, looking at text messages, searching social media, trying to multitask. But instead of getting a lot done, we sometimes struggle to complete even a single task and fail to achieve our goal for the day. Then we go home, and even there we find it difficult to 'switch off' and read a book or watch TV without picking up our smartphones. For complex tasks we need to get in the 'flow' and stay focused’’, she added.
In the study, the team of researchers divided 75 healthy young adults into three groups, one group received Decoder, one control group played Bingo for the same amount of time and a second control group received no game.
All the 75 participants were tested at the start of the trail and after four weeks using the CANTAB Rapid Visual Information Processing test (RVP), it was clearly visible in the results that the ‘Decoder’ were better than those who played Bingo and those who played either of the game.
Professor Sahakian commented: "Many people tell me that they have trouble focussing their attention. Decoder should help them improve their ability to do this. In addition to healthy people, we hope that the game will be beneficial for patients who have impairments in attention, including those with ADHD or traumatic brain injury. We plan to start a study with traumatic brain injury patients this year’’.
During this test, participants have to first attend to numbers and then shift their attention to letters and then shift back to numbers.