How a Technology Addiction Hurts Your Health

Woman on Instagram with phone

Unfortunately, these stats are only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the myriad ways in which technology addiction can negatively impact your well-being. Although many factors can affect physical and mental health, the following outcomes could be symptoms of a dangerous tech fixation.

It May Lead to Anxiety and Depression

A large body of scientific evidence has linked tech addiction—especially smartphone dependency, problematic internet use, and gaming—with anxiety and depression. Most distressing, some studies suggest teenagers are especially prone to developing these disorders as a result of tech overuse, and that tech dependence could even be contributing to adolescent suicide rates, perhaps driven by extreme cyberbullying, public shaming, and other emotionally abusive social behaviors that have been well documented.

It Makes You Distracted—Really Distracted

In one systematic review of previously published research, 100 percent of included studies reported a correlation between problematic internet use and symptoms of ADHD. In another, internet addiction was associated with more severe ADHD symptoms than control groups. We’re living in an ADHD culture, yet the ability to ignore distractions and control where our attention is directed is crucial to health and happiness.

It Saps Your Sleep

Not only can the anxiety and depression brought on by tech addition result in sleep problems, but the artificial “blue” light emitted by computer screens and cell phones is known to suppress the production of melatonin, resulting in sleeplessness.

And That’s Not All
Excessive screen time is also linked to:
  • Obesity
  • Eye problems, including eyestrain and dry eye
  • Hearing damage
  • Musculoskeletal symptoms like “text neck”
  • Injuries and accidents

I believe technology use is very likely associated with other health impacts as well, though the links aren’t as clearly established yet in the literature.

Using smartphones appears to stimulate the fight-or-flight response and decrease the rest-and-digest response. These changes to the nervous system and associated stress hormones are connected with virtually all chronic diseases.
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