Nana Loves a Bit of Just Dance 3

It's not just surgeons who benefit from a spot of video gaming - old people do, too. A newly published academic study has concluded that older people are happier and gained a higher level of well-being through frequently playing computer games — even if only for short spells at a time.

Researchers at the North Carolina State University learned that those that had video games in their lives didn't exhibit as much negative emotion or feelings of depression as those that didn't.

140 people aged 63 and over were quizzed on how often they played computer games, if at all. A series of assessments took place to determine their emotional and social well-being. 61 percent of participants gamed at least occasionally while 35 percent said they played once a week.

Dr. Jason Allaire, The project's lead professor of psychology, remarked:

The research published here suggests that there's a link between gaming and better well-being and emotional functioning.

Further studies for the team will try to ascertain if there is any evidence that video games actually improve mental health in later life.

The featured games and playing times of the studies were not specified, but the findings are certainly food for thought.

Next time you think of old people asleep in front of the TV, playing bowls and baking fruit cakes all day, keep in mind that they're psychologically more likely to prefer "pwning n00bs" on Call of Duty or battering brain-hungry beasts in ZombiU.

With the first gaming generation growing ever closer to old age, we can expect older people to become a larger gaming demographic.