October 14, 2016
A few years ago, smartphones were a pleasant addition to your life. They had fun games, engaging social media apps, and all your contacts in a handy pocket-sized device. But recently, they have become part of everyday life. You pay your bills on them, you communicate with your boss on them, and you even scheduled root canals on them. Everything is being funneled through these conveniently sized smartphones. And it’s not having a great impact on your health.
According to research compiled by Ooma, there are a lot of adverse effects to prolonged smartphone use that may have gone unnoticed by avid users. From digital eye strain and poor posture to hand pain and headaches, these little devices are making it hard to justify checking Facebook every 20 minutes. Particularly when you know you aren’t going to have any more notifications.
What’s worse is that the physical effects of prolonged smartphone use aren’t even the biggest problem. As the data shows, the psychological impact of using your smartphone on such a regular basis is similarly negative. The constant stream of photos is fundamentally altering our perception of the world, while being constantly available has stopped anyone from feeling comfortable in the moment. This creates a general discomfort when it comes to the pressure of time and mind bogglingly short attention span.
“There are 1.8 billion digital images uploaded every single day,” wrote the authors of the study. “That’s 657 billion photos in one year. The trend to capture life moments is changing how we experience them, and research has identified that it is also changing how we remember those captured moments.”
The biggest problem, however, is that this technology has erupted in popularity so fast that scientists and researchers are still figuring out the lasting effects. The first iPhone was launched less than 10 years ago, a paltry research window to say the least. And with technology evolving faster and faster every day, it may be hard to get any accurate data before the next big thing ends up in your pocket.
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