Nowadays, people often use their digital devices such as computers, smartphones or tablets for work or entertainment. However, how would the frequent uses of these devices affect our health？
Main activities of using smartphones
According to a research in marketing charts, a large majority (90%) of people in US like to use their smartphones for text messaging. It is believed that it is one of the main activities of using smartphones of people over the world. Meanwhile, the percentage of using social networking and watching TV are 76% and 70% respectively, which means that over 50% respondents said they had done these activities through their smartphones at least once each day. It reflects that people mainly use their phones for communication or entertainment, but seldom use their phones for health matters. Actually, using smartphones for health information could bring convenience and benefits for people.
Daily usage of mobile internet of Hong Kong people
In Hong Kong, almost everyone owns a smartphone. Since mobile was created, it is believed that the main purpose of buying a phone is for communication, but now it seems the original meaning of this invention was distorted. According to a piece of news in South China Morning Post in 2013, there were 96% of smartphone users go online every day. Comparing to other countries in Asia, it was the highest. It reflects that the time of using smartphone of Hong Kong people is the longest. However, spend a large chunk of time on this kind of devices would harm our health, especially for teenagers.
Negative effects of using smartphones on health
1) Increase the risk of obesity
As the time of using mobiles becomes longer, the time of sitting simultaneously increases, which means people would spend less time or even no time to do exercises. Thus, risk of obesity rises due to the lack of exercising. If people are willing to spend 30 minutes on work out, there is no doubt that the risk of obesity would decrease.
2) Sleep problem
Addicting on playing smartphones may shorten the sleeping period and affect the quality of sleeping, which may lead to insomnia. With a unstable sleeping time, people would feel hard to adapt the sleeping cycle. Besides, the light and notification sound of the mobile phone would disturb people while sleeping. So, it is better to put your mobile phone far from your bed or you can choose to turn it off.
3) Mental health
Now, people have a frequent uses on social media like Facebook, Twitter or Weibo. However, cyber bullying are prevalent especially among youngsters. Once they are being bullied by the peers, they might suffer from depression which affect their mental health in long term.
Positive effects of using electronics on health
1) Improvement in physical health
Now, there are more and more application apps about healthcare such as apps for work out or apps for recording physical condition. These apps help people to have better control on their health by regulating their diet or exercising. What is more, these apps encourage people to have higher awareness on their health which can lower the risk of fall ill.
2) Reduce the risk of suffering from emotional diseases
As there are more types of electronic devices sold in the market, there are more choices of games provided by different companies. This provides ways for people to release their stress accumulated from work or school which is much better for people to have mood swings and have some bad behavior such as drinking beers or taking drugs to set themselves free. In long term, this ensures people are always keeping in a good mood.
Mobile apps for healthcare
~Medici: a app for patients to have a chat with their doctors when they are ill, which can avoid spending time and money
~Digital Pharmacist: a app for customers to communicate with pharmacists easily to have deeper understanding on different medicines
~Insight Optics: a app provides people to have eye exams through the camera of smartphones and having valuable information from eye specialists
In conclusion, there are both positive and negative effects brought by the frequent use of digital devices. Yet, how could people reduce the harms of using such devices? It can only depends on your ability of control. If you cannot get rid of the lure, I suggest you to set a timetable to restrict yourself on using digital devices. Addiction on electronics caused not only physical health, but also mental health. These detrimental consequence may affect you in long term. Before starting your digital life, think twice.
References and photos sources:
1. Ernest Kao (2013) ’96pc of Hongkongers use their smartphones to go online everyday’, ‘South China Morning Post’
2. Holly L. Roberts (2017) ‘The negative effects electronics have on teens’, ‘LIVESTRONG.COM’
3. Karehka Ramey (2012) ‘Modern Technology Advantages and Disadvantages’, ‘Use of Technology’
4. 5 Apps changing healthcare in 2017 (2017) ‘Alexandra Bohigian’, Apptentive
5. ‘Top daily activities on smartphones and tablets’ (2014), marketing charts