Contributed by Tara Workman, Chiropractic Physician
As today’s smartphones get smarter, our society’s health gets weaker. The effect of technology overuse is affecting our health at an astonishing rate. From developmental delays, poor posture and ADD/ADHD, technology overuse is leading to a new generation of ill health outcomes.
Today’s adolescents are constantly over-stimulated and always connected to their devices, commonly without any connection to their culture. Adults are more over-stressed and sedentary than ever before.
In fact, 83% of professional workers check their emails after work, 66% take their technology with them on vacation and more than 50% report sending emails while having a meal with family or friends. With the stress of keeping up with work, 73% of employees worry that they will be at a disadvantage at work if they disconnect or do not instantly respond to emails and messages (Goldsmith, 2016).
As workers become more stressed out and fatigued, they present to chiropractors with higher rates of postural decline, which affects their productivity and leads to common musculoskeletal complaints such as headaches and migraines, neck pain, tightness of the neck and shoulders, and low back pain. Postural decline at work results in increased absenteeism, burnout, a decrease in productivity and lower job satisfaction.
Over-connected children aren’t much better. Researchers found that four of every five students had significant mental and physical distress, panic, confusion and extreme isolation when forced to unplug from technology for an entire day (Hough, 2011). All of this stress by being disconnected for just one day!
Your Brain on Technology:
Many people are presenting with sensory disassociation or sensory mismatch due to over-stimulation of certain parts of their brain, but under-stimulation in other areas. For example, while watching videos on YouTube or scrolling through Facebook updates, the visual system is completely bombarded with messages and visual stimuli.
Vision is processed in the back of brain, in the occipital lobe. This area of the brain is completely over-stimulated while the front part of the brain, the frontal lobe for reading, writing and memory is completely under-stimulated.
This sensory discrepancy is resulting in changes of brain output that can lead to developmental delays in the classroom, ADD/ADHD, poor social behaviors and depression in adults and children. All of which can be overcome by simply detaching from your device.
For best health outcomes unplug your device and move your body. Focus on mindfulness to calm your mind and stay present in the moment without technology bombardment. Mindfulness will help to de-stress and allow you to enjoy your surrounding environment and be present in the moment.
Improve your health today by making an appointment with Dr. Tara Workman at Altair Chiropractic.