Mental HealthPhysical Health

Is Technology Making us Sick?

By April 12, 2016 No Comments

Think back to the last time you went out with your friends. Did you enjoy your time with them without once glancing at your cellphone? Did anyone else you interacted with (or didn’t, as the case may be)?

This is a debate that has been going on for years, since mobile devices first became more affordable. There’s actually a disorder called “nomophobia,” which describes the anxiety some people feel when they can’t, for whatever reason, check their phone for the latest messages and updates. Even if you’re not surgically attached to your phone, there’s no doubt that technology has its hazards:

Socially

An old-fashioned conversation, during which no-one checks their phone, is almost unheard of these days. It’s as if whomever we’re with is just not enough to hold our interest, and to some this can be hurtful. That being said, technology has made life a lot easier for more introverted people, who may be less comfortable interacting with others face-to-face.

Visually

Being bombarded by the glare of screens throughout the day is pretty bad for our eyesight, with the effects ranging from blurred vision to headaches caused by eyestrain. The glare also over-stimulates our brain, especially last thing at night, which can make it difficult to get to sleep. To reduce the effects of this, change your screen settings or use a filter to reduce the glare, be sure to take frequent breaks and switch off all screens at least an hour before bedtime (yes, that includes your phone).

Physically

If you spend too much time leaning over a screen, you could well end up with hunched shoulders and a sore back and neck. That’s not to mention “texting thumb” or “cell phone elbow,” both of which are caused by doing the same movement over and over again.

Further research is still needed to prove that radiation from electronic devices is dangerous, but it’s worth bearing the possibility in mind. Counteract these hazards by regularly stretching and moving around, and taking time away from your devices whenever you can.

There’s really no easy solution here. Technology is absolutely a part of our everyday life and there’s no doubt it’s here to stay. Let’s appreciate all the good things it brings us, while also staying aware of the possible negative effects and doing what we can to balance them out.

Leave a Reply