We may all believe that we have a life without our cell phones, but how much are we really living? Being glued to a screen rather it cell phone, laptop of TV is can be referred as an addiction. Screen or Cell phone addiction is real. Its impacts are slow but constant. Some people think that it’s just another add-on to their life. But, the truth is that cell phones have become an integral part of our lives. It is so prevalent in many parts of the world that we think about it as if this is an innate right.
Are we getting far from reality?
People can spend months on end without thinking and losing sight of reality. So many things can happen on the go when you have your cell phone around your neck. One thing that must be clear was the impact that the use of mobile phones has had on teens’ physical and mental well-being in particular. Teenagers can become bored with what they are doing, so instead of being present in reality and interacting with others, they turn to technology, and then they eventually give up the whole idea of ever leaving the house and interacting with people.
Direct impact of cell phones on metal health
In recent studies, some were found to have their attention span reduced by 50%, which means their ability to pay attention. They are also at risk of having severe mood disorders when they are using cell phones too much. The constant stream of notifications comes from the fact that many other people’s phones are constantly flashing their apps and updates. Then there’s the cost of owning a cell phone and what others will think of you for keeping one, and how many advertisements there will be. This could affect teenagers’ decision-making abilities and make them feel like they need to keep getting new accessories to keep up with social media.
The research by A. A. Iyer, M. C. S., & P. C. Vartanian, W. M. (2008) conducted research to know the effects of mobile phone use among young women. He also found that the use of such gadgets as mobiles, laptops, etc., reduces the time that girls/boys spend with their families.
There are also reports of suicides among teen girls using their phones when talking with friends online. Not only does this waste time and energy, but these kids also don’t understand the reality in their own homes. A lot of them are trying to meet the standards of society in which cell phones exist. Instead of communicating when you need to talk face-to-face, you just scroll through it and see as many different faces as possible. Technology doesn’t always have to give any answers, you just have to trust the information that comes in through the screen.
Lack of Enforcement of good parenting
Parents must be aware of the effects this might have and find ways to control their children from spending so much time on their tablets or smartphones. Reduction in parental participation helps them develop negative habits likewise in men. Being young at heart and seeing their parents struggling to keep up with texting and tweeting while having fun on social media makes adolescents grow apart. It makes them feel like they don’t have a place in society because they aren’t interacting with others every day or having the same social experiences.
The majority of the population thinks their parents know more than anything about what is best for them, and then you see that they are actually not paying attention to their kid’s social needs. And that can lead to depression and anxiety. By constantly being connected to cell phones you have to be alert and on top of everything. Kids with laptops or cell phones often show less empathy and patience in real life.
We live in the 21st century, and you wouldn’t allow your kid to go outside until he/she has the latest iPhone. And there are lots of consequences to not having one like bullying, inferiority complex etc. We have the choice to use cell phones or not. No one really knows what the long-term effects of excessive use of cell phones are, and how it affects our mental health.
Our generation had to start adapting to the idea of not having their phones on them so they would have more time to think. All of those wonderful social networking sites, and applications, of course, made our youth vulnerable. Yes, it seems that the younger generations are taking advantage of all this modern technology, but it is becoming harder and harder to ignore.
How we can reduce the harm?
If we take a look at the situation regarding our cell phones, we now know why people have gotten addicted to them and how bad it can be for them. There are many ways to deal with this. Here are some ideas that can help curb this trend and avoid consuming too much social media and cell phones:
- Make sure that you delete all “off-limits” pages from your phone.
- Do not download new or funny videos that will change the mood or the state of your mind. Instead observe and appreciate nature. Find a good hobby to elevate your mood and mental ability.
- Stop watching movies on Netflix and other premium streaming services only. Watch TV shows instead, because such kinds of content are not always appropriate for teenagers. Instead of watching episodes for Disney+, choose comedies for children and watch them at home with your parents.
- Don’t install apps that you don’t even need or consider to use or use. Remove all unnecessary apps from your phone. As much as we have discussed internet addiction, do not let your smartphone become your assistant.
- Limit texting and chatting online. Then use electronic means instead. In fact, use voice calls, Zoom calls, Skype calls, and Face Time calls to communicate with someone far from you.
- Avoid conversations that can divert your attention. Some studies show that this technique can keep you focused and increase memory retention by keeping people-focused.
- While speaking to someone, pay attention to your words; remember them and speak them clearly. Try to remain calm and do things without distracting yourself and other people.
- It becomes harder to focus on driving when we have our mobile phones by our sides to constantly distract us, hence we need to be alert. We should be cautious and should try avoiding it unless there’s an urgent reason. Make sure that your child understands this too.
- It doesn’t matter if you’re moving to a different city or town, you need to find a way to talk to people. Finding new people to meet makes you a part of another community. Maybe meeting and sharing your interest or hobbies, or simply being at the same place can bring you closer to your friends.
- Talk to people over the phone and stay contactable but do not cling to your phone expecting lots of notifications or messages. Start reaching out to a friend or maybe a group with whom you want to connect.
- Start volunteering for organizations or clubs to reach out to others in need. Offer to donate a product or service if it can be helpful for someone. Don’t be afraid to help those in need in real life.
- Self-care is mandatory. Take out some time for your physical and mental health. No need to post it on social media to get attention of appreciation of others. This what we have to do sincerely for ourselves.
As humans we have the freedom to speak our minds and to be who we want to be. When someone tells us to sit at home because they’re not going anywhere, or they’re working from home they are really looking for an escape. Many people think that when you have your cell phone it means you can do whatever you want with it, and they are able to get anything they want when they want. Or they think that if they have their cell phone, they can get away from everyone. Unfortunately, their imagination runs wild and often leads them into dangerous situations and sometimes even crimes. In this respect, we need to think roader, even broader than our cell phone screens, which we are addicted to. Technology should not command us instead, we should be the ones who take it under control.