Our world is changing everyday. Technology has provided us a positive and negative effect into our lives. From our personal laptops, tablets, and phones to behind-the-scenes technology that furthers medicine, science, and education. Technology is here to stay, but it’s always expanding and advancing. As each new technology enters the scene, it has the potential to improve lives. Maybe in a few decades, we eventually live in a cyberpunk world. But, in some cases, it also has the potential to negatively affect physical and emotional health. Read on as we take a look at a few possible negative effects of technology.
4 Possible Negative Effects of Technology
1. Eye Problem
According to the American Optometric Association (AOA), prolonged use of computers, tablets, and cellphones can lead to digital eye strain also known as computer vision syndrome. Many individuals experience eye discomfort and vision problems when viewing digital screens for extended periods. The level of discomfort appears to increase with the amount of digital screen use.
Symptoms of digital eye strain may include:
- Blurred vision
- Dry eyes
- Neck and shoulder pain
These symptoms may be caused by:
- Poor lighting.
- Glare on a digital screen.
- Improper viewing distances.
- Poor seating posture.
- Uncorrected vision problems.
- A combination of these factors.
The AOA recommends the 20-20-20 rule to ease eye strain. To follow this rule, try to take a 20-second break every 20 minutes to look at something that’s 20 feet away.
2. Musculoskeletal problems
When you use a smartphone, the chances are that you’re holding your head in an unnatural forward-leaning position. This position puts a lot of stress on your neck, shoulders, and spine. A small 2017 study found a clear association between self-reported addiction to smartphone use and neck problems.
An earlier study found that among teens, neck-shoulder pain and low back pain rose during the 1990s at the same time that the use of information and communication technology was increasing.
Overuse of technology can also lead to repetitive strain injuries of the fingers, thumbs, and wrists. There is also a slight chance your pinky finger are bent. The reason is that you may use your pinky finger to hold the phone. If you’re feeling the pain of technology, you can take the following steps to reduce these issues:
- Take frequent breaks to stretch
- Create an ergonomic workspace
- Maintain proper posture while using your devices
3. Sleep problems
Using a technology in the bedroom can also interfere with sleep in a number of ways.
A 2015 study demonstrated that exposure to the blue light that devices emit can suppress melatonin and interrupt your circadian clock. Both of these effects can make it harder to fall asleep and result in you being less alert in the morning. If you are using your phone before bedtime, you may suffer some sleep deprivation.
Having electronic devices in the bedroom places temptation at your fingertips, and it can make switching off more difficult. That, in turn, can make it harder to drift off when you try to sleep.
4. Emotional problems
Using social media can make you feel more connected to the world. But, comparing yourself to others can leave you feeling inadequate or left out.
A recent study looked at the social media use of more than 1,700 people between the ages of 19 and 32. The researchers found that those with high social media use felt more socially isolated than those who spent less time on social media.
The researchers said that there might be an association between problematic internet use and depression, substance use, and aggressive behavior. They also noted that high school boys, who, according to the researchers, tend to be heavier users of the internet, may be less aware of these problems.
If social media use makes you feel anxious or depressed, try cutting back to see if doing so makes a difference.
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