We have gotten used to technology being a constant part of our lives. As soon as we wake up, we start using many devices, tools, and programs. We do this throughout the day, until we get to bed. A lot of us even fall asleep with our smartphones in our hands, as we are so attached to them.
Technology is very useful and it has improved our lives drastically. However, this use of technology also has its negative sides. The effect of this excessive use of technology can harm our health in many ways and some people even say that we are still unprepared for such a technology-driven age.
Technology has made us constantly engaged with our devices. We are always looking at our phones, social media, laptops, and tablets, even when we are doing something else. The consequence is that our minds are always bombarded with irrelevant information during the day. Our minds are simply exhausted by the information we don’t need.
But the problem is that we cannot separate the information we don’t need with what’s important. This greatly reduces our ability to remember things that are essential. Just think about it, how many times have you had a conversation with someone while looking at your phone and forgot what they had said just a moment ago?
All of this is happening because of too much junk information that our brains memorize during the interaction with our devices.
The effects of social media have been so devastating that a lot of younger people today spend many days per week where they are never physically close with the people they communicate with. Today we are more isolated than ever, even though technology has brought us closer.
What’s even worse is the fact that most people who feel isolated turn to social media to combat this issue. However, they don’t know that technology is the reason why they feel isolated in the first place. Not only this, but people pursue validation on social media. They add as many “friends” as possible online and try to get likes so that they can validate their existence.
Rather than actually trying to make their lives better, they try to look good on social media by sharing their opinions on unimportant topics and posting hundreds of pictures per month. Another consequence of social media is that people never take a break and spend time alone, they feel like they are missing out on something if they’re not online.
Digital devices and their screens cause a lot of eye strain, especially when you consider how many hours per day people spend their time locked into a screen. A lot of people experience great discomfort after looking at a screen for two hours.
If you ever take your phone during the night and you instantly get blinded for a couple of seconds due to the brightness, then this happens to you as well.
This is because our eyes are simply not designed to read such a small text on little bright screens. Looking into a screen too much can lead to a condition called Computer Vision Syndrome. This condition can cause a lot of issues from eye strain and dry eyes, to blurred vision.
These are all short-term side effects as long-term consequences haven’t been proven but they will soon enough.
Just look around you when you’re using public transportation or walking around town. You will notice a lot of people walking around with headphones on their head. Maybe you also do this and although it’s convenient, listening to loud music constantly each day can have negative effects on your hearing.
Combine this with loud traffic, visiting concerts, going to clubs, and even young people in their 20s can suffer partial hearing loss. Most headphones used today have the power to go over 100 decibels and this is louder than most power tools. If you do this often, you’ll definitely damage your hearing and feel great consequences when you get older.
Due to repetitive movements that we use to type on a keyboard or on our phone, our joints and muscles can suffer greatly. Constantly using hands to type can lead to osteoarthritis and increase similar symptoms. If a person is prone to this condition, this kind of behavior can help manifest the symptoms more quickly.
Texting often also puts pressure on tendons that stretch from our thumbs to our wrists and make them more open to injuries. The symptoms can manifest in the form of pain that runs down the side of the thumb near the wrist or even moves up the forearm.
Having access to the internet is like opening a Pandora’s box for addiction. This is especially true if we are talking about younger people who haven’t fully matured and can easily get swept away by something. There are so many things online that can be addictive, from shopping, social media, video games, gambling games, adult content etc.
For example, social media triggers a dopamine high that has the same effect that we see in alcoholics or drug addicts. When we get likes and see notifications on social media, the levels of dopamine (a hormone for happiness) increase and this is why we have a sense of satisfaction from the experience.
Technology offers many benefits but there is also a lot of danger lurking around them. Some people are wondering whether it’s worth it? Yes, it is. However, it’s important for people to start disciplining themselves on how to use technology properly to avoid the negative effects. Parents, in particular, are responsible for teaching their children how to use their gadgets to avoid these downsides.