TMCnet Feature
November 25, 2020

5 Main Harms Caused to Health by Internet Addiction

Today, almost any office work can be done via the Internet. New professions related to working on the Internet are emerging - content manager, copywriter, and blogger. Traditional print media are slowly but surely moving into the online arena. Thus, every modern person spends more and more time on the Internet every day - at a computer, tablet, or smartphone. 



Such changes simply cannot but affect human health. Next, we will consider what direct health threats can ensue from excessively finding an electronic device over the screen and what to do to reduce harm from them as effectively as possible.

Effect of Internet on Health        

1.Impact on Posture

Causes and Consequences

 Focusing on the screen of the device, the person tilts his head forward, bending his neck, and at the same time keeps his hands in a fixed position. As a result, the load on the upper spine increases, and pains appear in the neck and shoulder girdle. But unpleasant sensations in the body are not all the consequences of improper posture. 

According to a 2015 study published in the journal Health Psychology, a stoop back negatively affects the ability to cope with stress and contributes to the formation of low self-esteem. Correct posture doesn't just help you look your best. It sends the right signals to the brain that a person is confident in his strength and can cope with any task.

Prevention

 When sedentary work, be sure to devote time to physical exercise, which will help maintain the health of the spine. You don't even have to get up from your desk for this. Besides, you need to allocate ten minutes a day to warm up.

Also, trying to get up from your computer and get up as often as possible is a kind of exercise that will help minimize the impact of a sedentary lifestyle on your health.

2.Effects on Vision

Causes and Consequences

 Today, a person receives more information than ever from the small screen of a mobile device. Considering that very often a smartphone or tablet is used on the go, image shaking is added to the already not quite physiologically safe reading from the phone screen. With a typical 8-hour workday at the computer and resting in the evening in front of the TV screen, a person's eyes experience more stress than ever before.

Prevention

 Blink more often to maintain the stability of the tear film, periodically rest your eyes during the working day. And, of course, in the presence of any violations, it is necessary to correct vision by 100%. Otherwise, eyes will fatigue, headaches may appear, and vision may deteriorate further.

3.Impact on Weight

Causes And Consequences

 The growth of affordable personal technology has significantly influenced the lifestyle of the modern person. If earlier, to buy something, you had to go shopping, and children, wanting to play, went out of the house onto the street, today such physical activity is no longer a necessity.

Any product can be bought with delivery in just a few clicks, and all kinds of computer games and mobile applications are becoming an increasingly attractive alternative to outdoor games in the yard.

Such a decrease in physical activity, or physical inactivity, leads to many diseases and problems, primarily overweight. Another factor influencing the development of obesity is the lack of awareness of food consumption. Concentrating on what is happening on the screen, a person is hardly aware of the amount eaten.

Prevention

To avoid such negative consequences from the use of gadgets, you must first give up the habit of eating and drinking in front of the screen. Many people have this bad habit. They would sit in front of a TV and start to Google (News - Alert) the solutions to their problems.

 For example, if they have alcohol addicts at home. They would keep searching about it, instead of doing some real efforts. By searching how to help an alcoholic on Google won’t do any good unless you do some physical effort.

And of course, today the role of physical activity is more important than ever. At least one hour a day. And in this regard, a smartphone can be very useful. Install a mobile application that will keep track of calories, remind you of training, and recommend the necessary exercises.

4.Impact on Ability to Concentrate

Causes And Consequences

 Smartphones and tablets were originally conceived as tools for increasing productivity - it was assumed that combining many functions in one device would allow multiple tasks to be performed simultaneously. However, in reality, sometimes this leads to the exact opposite result.

Most active smartphone users constantly switch from one task to another - there is so much to do and see! This amount of information arriving chaotically can quickly lead to overwork. 

Prevention

You need to do a series of simple concentration exercises regularly:

  • Focus on a point on the wall and look at it as long as possible. It is better if the wall is monochromatic (the pattern on the wallpaper is distracting in such situations). 
  • Take any book, magazine, or newspaper. With just a glance (not fingers, not a ruler!) Count the number of words in a paragraph or note. 
  • Select a number (for example, 100) and start counting down to zero. While doing the exercise, try not to be distracted by extraneous thoughts.

5.Effects on The Brain

The brain changes associated with Internet addiction are similar to those observed with alcohol and cocaine use. A group of Chinese scientists led by Hao Lei from the Center for Magnetic Resonance Imaging in Wuhan City scanned the brains of 17 adults with Internet addiction and compared the results with those of 16 healthy people.

Research findings, which may shed light on behavioral problems and help develop new ways to get rid of the addiction, have identified lesions in the white matter of the brain in areas responsible for emotional processing, decision making, and cognitive control. Similar changes in the white matter of the brain were recorded in other forms of addiction, in particular, with the use of alcohol and cocaine.

However, the study authors admit that they cannot tell if such brain changes are a cause or a consequence of Internet addiction. People who already have similar brain changes likely find it easier to acquire this addiction.

6.Impact on Immunity

Scientists from the British University of Swansea and the University of Milan have conducted an interesting study that proved that Internet addiction undermines the immune system of the human body.

Addicted Internet users are characterized by increased anxiety and experience much more stress when, for example, they cannot go online. The change in tension and relief with a successful connection, according to scientists, greatly changes the level of cortisol in the body. And cortisol largely determines the protective functions of the immune system.

Summing Up

There is no doubt that the internet is useful and provides us with tons of information. However, it is a fact that it has a bad effect on human health.



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