Technology Addiction And Brain: Understand Its Impact

The advent of the internet, as well as the widespread usage of smartphones, tablets, and personal computers, has made it harder to maintain a good technological balance. 

Staying connected on social media, taking part in video calls at work, and replying to emails can make you feel like you need to be ‘plugged in’ to the internet all of the time. 

We may feel as though we are losing out on important information if we are not connected to technology. However, studies show that excessive use of the internet and internet-enabled devices can lead to technology addiction.

In fact, the Gallus Detox journey also showcases many instances where people with technology addiction have a higher chance of developing mental illnesses. 

So, without further ado, let’s find out more about it.

What Is Technology Addiction?

If you have any obsessive dependence on technology of any kind, you are the ideal example of a technology addict. You may be addicted to using social media, online gaming, or online shopping, and you don’t even know it. 

But, many people spend hours enjoying these activities, so why are we calling it an addiction?

That’s because extreme dependence on technology can have a negative impact on our brain and cognitive health. 

The more technology we use, the more our brains encounter neurological alterations.

According to studies, these changes may have a significant impact that technology addiction becomes as dangerous as substance addiction.

Technology Addiction-Types

A behavior pattern characterized by a dependence on the internet and technology-enabled devices is known as technology addiction. 

Even though the DSM does not consider tech addiction a mental health issue, people with this addiction show signs of behavioral addiction, such as an inability to control, regulate, or limit their use of the internet and technology.

Like other behavioral addictions, technology addiction can negatively affect our academic achievement, work, family, and social lives. We can become technology addicts if we:

  • Sustained mood swings.
  • Focus on the internet and digital media obsessively.
  • We neglect our social, professional, and school life.
  • We’ve lost count of how much time we spend online.

Addiction to technology can take many forms. 

Most people who have a technology addiction find that the stuff they consume on the internet or through technology is mood-enhancing or exciting. This leads to some of the alterations in the reward center of the brain.

The following are some of the most common causes of technology addiction:

  • Excessive texting.
  • Gambling on the internet.
  • Auctions on the internet.
  • Web surfing compulsively.
  • Playing video games without limitations.
  • Interaction on social media for a long time.

The severity of these addictions might range from mild to severe. However, all types of technology addiction can affect the brain.

How Do We Develop Technology Addiction?

Using technology is not the same as using drugs or alcohol, but the brain processes both addictions differently. 

Winning a video game level, receiving ‘likes’ on a photo, and gambling online all release dopamine, a feel-good chemical in the brain, in the same way as consuming alcohol or using narcotics does. 

We develop a craving for this dopamine release over time, which drives us to use technology and internet-connected devices even more. But unfortunately, this deceives the brain into believing it doesn’t need to naturally produce and release dopamine, disrupting the brain’s delicate chemical balance.

We tend to feel gloomy, have difficulties concentrating, and face depression, and anxiety when we don’t have enough dopamine. So naturally, we crave another burst of dopamine. 

The brain, which now recognizes technology as a reliable source of dopamine, tells us to spend even more time online, raising our chance of developing an internet addiction illness.

Impact Of Technology Addiction On The Brain?

When you have an addiction to technology, it releases the same amount of dopamine and makes you feel happier than other people get when they ingest drugs and alcohol. Unfortunately, once you stop it, you’ll also feel withdrawal symptoms like lack of sleep, irritability, mood swings, etc.

Let’s find out other impacts of tech addiction: 

It Reduces The Gray And White Matter In Brain

The brain requires a healthy amount of gray and white matter to function properly. 

White matter aids our ability to think quickly and focus. Gray matter aids in the processing of information and in the making of sound decisions. 

Excessive screen time can cause these fatty tissues to shrink, making it difficult to concentrate, focus, solve problems, and make decisions.

It Obstructs The Brain To Differentiate Day From Night

Internal light cues and sleep-inducing hormones are disrupted by the blazing light emitted by laptops, tablets, and cellphones. 

Exposure to strong lights regularly might trick the brain into believing it is still daytime when it is truly night. 

Of course, this can make it harder to fall asleep and cause sleep disturbances and insomnia.

It Disrupts Your Brain’s Ability To Store Memories

Neuroscientists have revealed that humans are less likely to remember personal information such as a relative’s birthday or phone number due to technology. 

The cerebrum and hippocampus, which govern our recognition, thinking, reading, learning, and long-term memory, can decrease if we spend too much time online, misuse technology,  or stare at screens all day.

It May Harm Our Impulse Controlling Skills

Excessive technology intake and impulsivity share an intricate relationship. 

Another study found that playing video games regularly can impair a player’s capacity to manage impulsive and aggressive behavior. 

Unfortunately, losing control of our urges can lead to weight problems, addictions, social problems, and other problems.

Get Rid Of It!

Today’s world is dominated by technology. Addiction, unfortunately, is also dominated by technology. 

If not dominated, technology addiction and brains certainly have a relationship, and once you get rid of the former, your brain will start functioning differently.

If you don’t believe you can have tech addiction, try quitting it for a few days, and see what new symptoms emerge. 

Let us know in the comment box if you still have more questions regarding this topic. We will get back to you with a reply in no time.

 

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