Modern technology has given us more information and capabilities than ever before. All of our lives are constantly surrounded by neverending innovations. However, while technologies such as social media or entertainment platforms are convenient, they can also have an effect on mental health. Recently, studies are finding serious health complications from the constant barrage of information. Technology can be an enjoyable and most often, a necessary part of life but there are ways to minimize the negative effects it has on the mind. Here are some of the complications that can occur if we abuse digital tools.
Decreased In-person Interactions
Initially, we could only interact with the ones within walking distance, creating tight-knit groups of humans. Later, communication via written word could be sent to nearby areas on foot or horseback. And then, the telephone, connecting voices across oceans. Today the smartphone has more capabilities than ever imagined and we as people can’t take our eyes off of them. The average American spends around 3 to 5 hours per day looking at their phone.
This massive amount of the day spent digitally is taking away from personal interactions. While you may have hundreds of Facebook friends, people are finding it increasingly difficult to communicate in the physical world. Not only is this unhealthy for developing personality but it takes away opportunities for building professional and personal relationships as well. Make sure to take time away from the phone when gathering with friends and put your phone away at the dinner table. Sharing time with real people will benefit your mental health greatly.
The internet has become a place to show off the glamorous side of lives, while in reality, trying to live up to those expectations is unfair. In a world of Instagram models and charming lifestyles, it’s easy to feel like you aren’t good enough. This can lead to body dysmorphia, eating disorders, and depression amongst other things. Recognizing that no one is perfect, even if they appear to be is a great step to appreciating your personal qualities.
With social media taking up the majority of people’s time online, we are finding out that people can be incredibly judgmental when they can hide behind a screen. The internet can be a nasty place of trolls and simply mean people. Teenagers are constantly checking to see how many likes their latest post received and get frustrated when they don’t get socially validated. This is an unhealthy way to receive approval and more people should look to the ones around them for honest opinions. These are problems of the millennial age and we are finding out that the youth is suffering from scrutiny online and increasing cases of anxiety.
Are You Suffering From Anxiety?
If you or someone close to you is suffering from a technology-induced anxiety disorder, reach out to the Neuroscience Center. Give us a call at 847-236-9310. Our highly skilled medical team will assess your situation and work to find you a solution. There are options to get your life back and we would like to help you achieve that goal.