Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Technology harms bodies and minds

Today, all kinds of screen based devices such as tablets, TV, laptops, computers and smart phones are common in daily life.

The average time adults spend on the screens is 11 hours, according to a 2014 Nielsen report, a global information, data and measurement company in the UK.

Screens might affect your health in different ways, such as brain, vision, sleep, weight and more. And being on the phone too much is one of the common problems in college students.

“I’m on my phone a lot, and I have to admit it is really bad,” junior public relation major Naomi Acosta said. “I have been trying to keep distracting myself from my phone more now.”

When she studies, she always tries to put her phone on ‘do not disturb’, so she can avoid binging on using her phone.

One of the consequences that a large amount of screens has on adults is a restructuring of the matter that makes up your brain. Those electronic devices have become such a huge part of the daily live that it is hard for people to put them down, even bed time. The fact is technology affects sleep in many ways.

“It is really bad for your brain if you go to bed with the phone next to you,” Acosta said. “The radiation is not good for your mind.”

University of Gothenburg psychologist Sara Thomée, one study’s lead researcher, says the blue light from digital devices suppresses the sleep-promoting hormone melatonin, keeping us from having restful sleep. Reducing melatonin makes it harder to fall and stay asleep.

Most Americans admit to using electronics a few nights a week within an hour before bedtime, according to the National Sleep Foundation.

“I am on the phone the moment I wake up till the end of the day,” Acosta said. “For me, going to the gym is one of the ways I do to keep myself away from using the phone.”

Acosta also suggested students should find a hobby to distract themselves from their phones and focus on what they need to do rather than being on the phone.

“Whenever I study, I try to leave my phone at home,” she said. “I only touch it when I get home.”

Junior public relation and TV and video production major Paola Sarante finds herself being in the same situation. She has trouble with spending too much time on the screens.
“I use my phone to text my mom and check my mails 10 times a day,” she said. “I think I spend 10 hours on my phone per day.”

Sarante feels like she is not connecting much with outside because of the time she spends on the screen.

“My eyes also got worse from this,” she said. “They got much worse, comparing to my freshman year.

People who are on the phone too much are often familiar with the symptoms: strained, dry eyes, blurred vision, and headaches, and poor posture can also cause neck and shoulder pain, according to the National Sleep Foundation.

“I would try to give my phone to my friends whenever I need to do my work and stay away from my phone,” Sarante said.

She also encourage students to ride a bike or go out for a walk and leave their phones at home, even only for 30 minutes.

“Nothing is going to happen in 30 minutes,” Sarante said. “It does not need an urgent attention.”


Email Hilly Nguyen at

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