In our last blog, we shared a few of the benefits of screen time and technology use. Today, we are going to explore the potential dangers of unbalanced screen time. Overconsumption of anything can be damaging to our health, and that is why it is important to remain mindful of our relationship to tech, and to cultivate healthy and sustainable ways to take part in screen time. Read on to explore some of the potential dangers of overusing tech-
Potential dangers of overconsumption with screen time:
- Poor sleep quality. The overconsumption of blue light, which comes from screens, affects our internal clock, and can cause disruptions in sleep, and even insomnia. Overconsumption of technology can also overstress our minds, and make it more difficult to slow down, be mindful, and relax. If you have noticed your screens negatively affecting your sleep patterns, consider shutting off screens at least 30 minutes before bed. Set your own boundaries, and uphold them.
- Social Media can negatively affect mental health and self esteem. When we are constantly on social media, we may begin to subconsciously compare ourselves and our lives to others. This can be so damaging to our own self image, and over time, this can take a large toll on our confidence, self worth, and motivation. It is important to remember that social media does not always express the truth, and that everyone’s life has their own challenges. Do your best to unfollow or unfriend any accounts that cause you to question your worth, devalue yourself, and compare your journey. Focus on only following and engaging with accounts that inspire, motivate, and uplift you. When you notice yourself beginning to compare yourself to others, or feel sad/ anxious, log off and focus on something that makes you feel good about yourself and your life. Remember that you don’t need to prove that your life is worth living by the amount of likes you get on social media. Create your own joy, and free yourself from the need of posting to prove something. You are worthy and right where you are meant to be on your own path!
- Overuse of your tech devices can also lead to physical complications. Too much screen time can lead to headaches, tired eyes, chronic posture pain, and a burnt out nervous system. These things can happen due to the sedentary nature of using tech, and the effects can be long lasting and painful. When you notice symptoms such as these, it’s time to turn off the screens and move your body. This can be as simple as standing, going for a short walk, or even just stretching your wrists. For the moments when you're required to spend a bit more time with your screens, do your best to be mindful of your posture and try to take a standing break every hour to stretch and move your legs.
It's important to note that these effects can vary from person to person and depend on the type of content consumed on screens, as well as your own susceptibility to these negative effects. Do your best to remain mindful of the time spent on screens and to make sure it is balanced with other activities and healthy communication.