The smartphone is possibly one of the greatest tech innovations of this century, so far. Most of us will use our phones to carry out many everyday activities that mean we no longer need computers or spend time waiting in lines at the bank or in stores. While smartphones are great, they can also cause us problems. Smartphone addiction, a reliance on social media and losing touch with others are just some of the issues that can be caused by using your phone too much. Is it time that you stepped away?
Smartphone addiction – the facts
A survey by Deloitte revealed that Americans check their phones 9 billion times a day, with 50% admitting to checking them at night. What’s more worrying is that 89% of people will watch TV and use their phones at the same time and many will check them while supposedly spending quality time with friends and family.
Internet technology is always transforming, and there are new ways to access the internet and stay ‘connected’ at all times. People can have internet access installed in their cars, have wearable technology and even have smart home assistants like Amazon’s Echo – keeping them online at any time of day. With all this technology around us all the time, could the stress of keeping up have an affect on our health?
Phones and our health
On a basic level, phones have been known to cause many serious problems. Many cases that go to a criminal defense lawyer are related to dangerous driving while using a cellphone. Browsing your phone while crossing the street could also have tragic consequences. On an emotional level, however, the problems caused by spending too much time on your phone are very worrying.
Research has shown that those who rely heavily on their phones, Facebook and other social media networks can lead to depression, particularly among young people. Using the networks might make a person feel more sociable, but staying at home to catch up on Facebook can mean that actual contact with friends and family is sacrificed. Heavy users often feel the need to compare themselves to others, particularly celebrities who project a lot of their lives online. This can cause issues with self-esteem and self-confidence that can be difficult to shake.
Taking a break from your phone
A ‘digital detox’ is a great way to decrease your reliance on your phone and to take a step back. Read a guide on how to do a digital detox, even if just for a week, and see if it makes a difference to your well-being. Make plans to see friends that require you to leave your phone in your bag or even at home and use a regular alarm clock to get you up in the morning. Making simple switches will teach you to rely on your phone less and help you realize that there is more to life than the screen in your hand.
A digital detox is a great way to take charge of your health without making major sacrifices. Take a look at how often you’re using your phone and if you begin to feel it’s excessive – do something about it to ensure a happier, healthier you.