There is an even more dangerous kind of addiction today than the addictions to drugs, alcohol, gambling or tobacco. This addiction is called addiction to technology. This is more dangerous as it is difficult to recognize and to understand how addicted you may be to it. Sitting in front of the computer for the whole day will not result just back pain if you don’t have the best gaming chair out there.
In the world of smartphones and social media, people spend a considerable amount of time online whether they are at work, school or home. It might be tough to decide how much is too much and if you are spending enough time using technology to be termed as an addict.
The two main kinds of addiction are:
- Internet addiction:
People who are addicted to the Internet can spend hours online. They may spend their time browsing or shopping online, surfing the Internet or even playing online games.
- Social media addiction:
Some people are addicted to social media and are constantly updating the world about the smallest details of their life. They use sites like Facebook or Twitter to post pictures and messages about themselves or their lives.
Signs of technology addiction:
The signs or symptoms of technology addiction can be difficult to decipher. Some of the common signs are:
- Not having a sense of time when using technology.
- Interacting less with people.
- Feeling restless, irritable or depressed if you are unable to use the Internet.
- Feeling the need to constantly check and respond to your smartphone.
- Using technology when feeling anxious, depressed or guilty as an escape mechanism.
- Using the computer or Internet for a longer period of time than intended.
Some other signs include feeling euphoric when using the Internet, reduced sleep patterns, withdrawal from other activities to focus on being online, neglecting family and friends etc.
Physical consequences on your health:
- Some physical signs of addiction may include backaches, neck aches, loss or gain of weight etc.
- It can also lead to problems related to the eye such as dry or red eyes, headaches, blurred vision, strain on the eyes etc.
- Spending too much time online reduces the amount of physical activity. This can lead the onset of diseases like diabetes, cancer and heart disease.
How to overcome technology addiction:
- Like any other addiction problem, fighting technology addiction requires determination and will power. It must begin by making small changes at home and in your lifestyle so that the process of detox is smooth.
- You can start by setting aside one day as a no-gadget day. You can start by doing this once every few weeks where you must not use your phones or computers for 24 hours. Doing so will allow your nervous system to get back on track.
- Then a change in behavior would be helpful where you can identify your patterns of usage and reduce it. Timing your usage everyday will help you understand what are the changes you need to make.
- You can use this as a great opportunity to explore the outdoors and go hiking, camping or biking. You can take up a sport and try to spend time doing things that do not require you to be online.
- In some extreme and rare cases, there may be a need to use prescription medicines as well.
The first step to battling any addiction is recognizing and admitting it. Only when this is done,the road to recovery will be a successful one. Knowing about technology addiction can help you to stop it or seek help for yourself or a loved one.