If you take a minute to look around you right now, I bet you will notice literally everyone is scrolling through their phone.
This really goes to prove technology has disrupted our lives, positively and negatively.
From Whatsapp, to Instagram and other dating apps, Kenyans can hardly get off their phones to have face to face conversations.
Experts tell us that this is bringing untold misery to many of us, causing alot of harm. Here’s how
1. Dead human connections
How often is it to see a bunch of millennial glued to their phone screens while in groups? They are absorbed in the virtual life on social media, and the effects is felt evidently in the manner in which most of them can’t be able to articulate their issues when required to.
Sending a simple whatsapp message to people includes use of emojis, meaning we forget ordinary language.
This is led to a new breed of human beings who portray antisocial traits easily classifieds as sociopaths.
With the recent confession by various local and international celebrities confessing on how faking it on social media has led to them slipping into depression as they try to keep up with the facade. With the recent alleged suicide of Papa Dennis, the pressure to keep up a fake flashy life has brought to fore how disastrous it can always end. Other celebrities have taken their life after being cyber bullied. They include August Ames, a Canadian pornographic actress and model who died in 2017 after hanging herself. She had been suffering from depression after backlash over a controversial tweet. Choi Jin-ri, a South Korean actress cum singer cum model who was found dead after hanging herself for getting cyber bullied by malicious commentary. Charlotte Dawson, an Australian TV personality took her life by hanging after getting cyber bullied.
Such acts prompted Instagram, a social media platform owned by Facebook to try a new user policy which allowed them to hide the total number of likes and views on photos and videos in the feed and on profile pages in countries such as Brazil, USA, Canada and Australia. This was a way of relieving pressure around the content a user posted.
With smart phones improving on their camera pixels and zoom ability, people are capturing moments via the photos rather than experiencing the happenings firsthand. This affects the way in which people remember things. A study carried out by Diana Tamir of Princeton University, showed that people seemed to lose something of the original experience whenever they externalized their experience by use of a phone or any other type of media.
4. Sleeping patterns
Adequate sleep is a key proponent of healthy living. Eric J Olson, a sleep medicine specialist based in the US, proposed 7-9 hours as the ideal duration for anyone above 18 years to be asleep. With most people going to bed in company of their phones, they end up sleeping late as they surf through the internet.
This reduces the amount of time an individual sleeps which disrupts the levels of dopamine, serotonin and cortisol which in turn affects the mood, thoughts and energy levels. Prolonged lack of enough sleep can easily lead to fatigue which can obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes and in worst cases heart attack.
5. Attention Span
With social media providing instant unending entertainment channels, most people can not fully concentrate on a single task while with their phone. This has forced most companies to create a work policy where you have to render your phone to the boss and pick it at the close of business. Divided attention leads to decrease in productivity and overall performance.
A new syndrome known as phantom vibration syndrome is where one perceives their phone to be ringing or vibrating while it’s actually not. Dr Michael Rothberg an American Holocaust historian and memory studies scholar argued that the term isn’t a syndrome but rather a tactile hallucination in the brain over a non-existing sensation.