How has technology evolution impacted healthcare today? Technology has infiltrated just about every fiber of our existence, and for most of us, it is hard to imagine going a single day without our phone, computer, and an active internet connection. This is hardly a surprise since today’s workaholic culture requires us to spend 8+ hours in front of a screen, large or small. Even after we leave the office, we continue to spend time in front of the screen. Studies are showing that not only does this affect our posture, eyes, and ears, but our brains as well. Both physically and psychologically. According to researchers from the University of California, we absorb three times more information than our predecessors 50 years ago. Then there is the fact that we are seemingly getting less active or even lazy with each new generation because we can get, and have come to expect, pretty much everything at the click of a button. Whether its communication with others, food, or our favorite TV shows. Too much irrelevant information, sedentary lifestyle, and instant gratification are arguably the most harmful impacts of constantly evolving technology. We have not even included the potential “Skynet” doomsday scenario involving AI.
With that in mind, let’s take a closer look at the 6 ways evolutionary technology is impacting our health.
Internet and smartphone addiction are more common than you might think, especially in the case of high school students. It seems that they are the ones which are the most affected by all this technology. One study has even found that they are not able to remain focused for
more than three minutes at a time. Complex academic assignments are a nightmare for most, which is why almost every essay writer service out there has their hands full. But students aren’t the only ones that are affected by this. Working adults have their work cut out for them as well.
While they are not spending time checking their Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram every so often, they are required to multitask, or at least check their email several times a day in addition to their existing workload. The solution would be to limit the number of devices we are using, as well as to keep the amount of time we spend with them outside of work to a minimum.
2. Emotional Instability
Spending too much time on social media will inevitably affect anyone, however, younger generations are especially susceptible to negative effects of this aspect of modern technology. Whenever one of your social media posts receives a like, a comment, or a share, your brain releases a tiny dose of dopamine, which is usually achieved whenever a pleasant interaction in real life takes place. This, combined with
lack of sleep due to texting and chatting, can lead to emotional instability in teens because they are really vulnerable at that age.
Not to mention how that affects their academic performance. Even if they were to rely on the best essay writing help they can afford, they would still have trouble keeping up in class and absorbing all the necessary knowledge. Finally, there is social pressure, which cannot be underestimated.
3. Cognitive Impairment
There is plenty of research which suggests that modern technology has a negative effect on our psychological well-being. When it comes to our brains, studies involving internet-addicted adolescents have shown that they have experienced the reduction of both grey matter and white matter in areas of the brain which are responsible for cognitive control and goal-directed behavior. The most obvious physical effects are bad posture, back problems, eye strain and problems with vision, as well as obesity as the result of being stationary and sitting down for the majority of the day.
4. Poor Social Skills
While online interaction is still interaction, it is no substitute for real-life communication with other people. Again, we come back to teens and adolescents, which spend a lot of time talking to each other on Facebook, Twitter, and texting, as well as by sharing images and videos on Instagram and Snapchat. Despite not being able to successfully navigate themselves through the world of social media, they might find themselves in trouble in the real world when trying to socialize with their peers, some of which, may not spend as much time online. Of course, getting children to interact with each other face-to-face is imperative. Not only does it make it easier and more natural for them to socialize, but it helps them to develop their emotions and emotional intelligence, which is just as important as their analytical skills.
5. Obesity, Diabetes, Heart Attack…
Now, sitting down for too long might not lead always lead to obesity, heart attack, diabetes, cancer, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure, just to name a few, but sitting down and looking at your phone or computer will definitely increase the risk for each of those diseases by a significant percentage. For instance, men who spend 23 hours a week sitting down behind a screen have a 64% greater chance of having a fatal heart disease with the next 21 years when compared to men which spend only 11 hours a week doing the same. What’s interesting is that technology can also lead to better health. Getting up for even a few minutes throughout the day might make a small difference. Also, you could start by taking a walk to work or riding a bicycle. If you live too far and have to take a bus or drive a car, you could still walk a portion of the way to your office. And there are other options while at the office. For instance, you could opt for a stability ball instead of a chair, which will not only help you work out your core muscles and maintain proper posture, but it will also help you burn a few more calories during the day. Getting a standing desk is another solution which many offices have these days.
6. Hearing Loss
Let’s face it, spending an entire day in the office or even jogging can get pretty tedious, which why most of us opt for cranking some music and using headphones or earbuds. Doing this every day and listening to your favorite tracks at mega-decibel levels can lead to hearing loss and permanent hearing damage, such as tinnitus, which is loud ringing in the ears. Once those sensitive hair cells in your ears get
damaged, they never grow back. As for prevention, well, you can simply turn down the volume and save your hearing that way. You can
also limit your exposure to loud music and noises and try to maintain your hearing. Or you can simply find some other way to distract yourself while doing some of the more boring and mechanical tasks.
These are just some of the health impacts modern technology has on our health. If you don’t think this is bad enough, keep in mind that all of this technology is relatively young, which means that its full impact on our well-being is not yet known. For the time being, try and protect yourself using the tips shared in this article. Good luck!