It may come to the surprise of very few that technology is addictive. Phones are at everyone’s side 24/7, it’s hard to ignore your personal devices and screens, and in general, technology is integrated into everyone’s daily lives. However, while tech addiction may be very real and commonplace at that time, this naturally leads to the question: Is it really that bad?
After all, society runs smoothly enough with technology as prevalent as it is, arguably even better than ever with improved efficiency. However, what many fail to realize is that what was gained in productivity heavily detracted from the mental health of every single person who regularly uses technology across the world.
What is Technology Addiction?
The question may seem self-explanatory, but there’s more to it than many would assume. So, for the sake of setting a foundation and branching off: technology addiction is a developed dependence on a device or devices for joy, reassurance, or stability. This definition expands from phones and computers to more specific examples like online gambling, video games, social media, and pornography.
The addiction itself isn’t as cut and dry as many would suspect. Yes, we may hear “we’re addicted to our phones” over and over again, but while it may be true, it isn’t just exclusive to everyone looking at their phones a lot. Just like any other addiction, there’s an unhealthy relationship between you and your devices. A constant urge to use your phone or check your messages, check your likes, or play that game – this isn’t healthy and shouldn’t be normalized to the extent that it is. That gut-wrenching feeling is called “technology withdrawal” and it’s what many today are afraid of experiencing, only furthering their addiction.
What’s The Problem?
So, we’ve established the issue, but haven’t quite reached the severity yet. After all, yet again, society is functioning with this system, so what’s the big deal? Well, it’s a matter of keeping yourself healthy and happy! Technology addiction can undeniably take a toll on your mental and physical health. Obsessiveness, shorter attention span, shorter temper, poor hygiene, neck pain, sleep complications, and eye issues are only the tip of the iceberg in this category. Not only that, but it affects relationships as well. Expecting constant interaction, being exposed to the inner workings of someone’s life, or even just what they want you to see can be incredibly detrimental to your mental health. Finally, there’s the “popularity” many can garner that builds a sudden influx of issues many haven’t experienced before the digital age. Implied expectations in quality from large audiences, uncensored vitriol from those with anonymity, numbers that track engagement, and punishment for not posting consistently – it builds unbelievable amounts of stress in people as young as children in middle school.
So, it’s a problem. What are some solutions? Well, as is the case with any addiction, there are a few options. Rehab works for some, though many have their gripes with that system and it’s valid enough. On the other hand, there’s addiction coaching! Some may have heard of coaches and assumed they meant exclusively for alcohol addiction or drug addiction, but while there are some addictions that garner more attention than others, there are some services that can cover it all! The Addictions Academy trains addiction coaches that specialize in most if not all fields including technology addiction, Sober on Demand is a fantastic service that can offer treatment if desired, and doing research is never a bad idea.
Some may feel apprehensive about addiction coaching due to not quite believing their addiction can be qualified as such, but it doesn’t hurt to ask questions. Sober on Demand is a great resource that allows direct contact for any questions or inquiries, and technology addiction is something you won’t want to take any chances on!