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Studies dealing with different aspects of Internet use suggest that spending too much time online can negatively im...
Studies dealing with different aspects of Internet use suggest that spending too much time online can negatively impact physical and mental wellbeing.
A study of more than 200,000 individuals by Australia’s Sax Institute found that even with regular exercise, sitting down for too long increases the likelihood of death. Yet, while it’s logical that spending hours sitting in front of a screen is less healthy than jogging in the park, is the act of being online itself unhealthy?
Research by Dr. Angie Page of the University of Bristol's Centre for Exercise, Nutrition and Health Sciences found that children who spent at least two hours per day playing on the computer were 48% more likely to develop social, emotional and concentration problems, despite daily participation in rigorous physical activity. However, Page’s findings were based on subjects aged 10 and 11 whose computer use was solely entertainment-based.
In his book “The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing to Our Brains,” author Nicholas Carr argues that Internet use bombards us with input and convenience, thereby hampering our creativity and intellect. Citing psychological and neuroscientific research as well as using philosophical arguments, Carr claims that the distracting nature of online pursuits actually inhibits our brain’s ability to construct new memories.
A study by Ethan Kross of the University of Michigan and Philippe Verduyn of Leuven University in Belgium found that young adults who use Facebook experienced a decrease in life satisfaction, while social scientists from Germany’s Humboldt University and Darmstadt Technical University found the most common emotion induced by Facebook use to be envy.
Internet addiction is a public health issue in several countries. To avoid the above negative psychological and physiological effects of overuse, spend ample time outdoors, engaging in physical activity and associating with friends and family.