A recent study by mobileinsurace.com has revealed the average person spends 23 days a year staring at their mobile device screen. Many of you will probably see this and think ‘I don’t spend that much time on my phone’ but the truth is you are probably using it way more than you think and it could be damaging your health...
Now, this isn’t one of those blog posts on the commonly reported effects of mobile devices on health, I’m not going to mention harmful radio waves or brain damage etc.
Instead, we researched 5 weird yet just as harmful ways your mobile device could be putting your health at risk…
1. Stress levels - Have you ever been in the middle of something really important or been trying to have a conversation with someone and all you can hear is your notifications tone kicking off in the background? This kind of interruption can put users on edge and increase stress levels. Don’t put your phone on silent at night? In this day and age, we are always ‘online’, with constant alerts and notifications that can have a significant impact on sleep, influencing people’s ability to deal with stress.
2. Thumb strains - research from Virgin Mobile has shown that nearly 4 million British people suffer from text message related injuries with 38% noting sore wrists or thumbs from texting. There are exercises you can do to strengthen your thumbs and wrists to help prevent injury but the general advice is to stop texting if it starts hurting!
3. Low self-esteem - No matter how hard we try; it can be very difficult to stay away from the world of social media when using a mobile device, and I imagine that if you follow people on Instagram or Twitter, they’re not going to be people who post pictures of their terrible lives! It’s great to see your news feed filled with how much fun your friends are having, or that 3rd holiday your neighbour is going on this year or those celebrities with their healthy meals and perfect faces BUT it is very easy to forget that people only post the great moments and if you lose sight of this you could end up wondering why your life isn’t a great as others APPEAR to be.
4. Separation anxiety - Dubbed ‘nomophobia’ i.e. no mobile phone phobia, it is described as an intense fear of being separated from your mobile device, which can lead to stress and anxiety.
5. Pedestrian accidents - The number of road traffic accidents involving pedestrians has increased, and people being on their mobile devices and therefore not looking where they are going has been partly blamed. In parts of the world, traffic lights are being installed at ground level to help try to save the lives of those people too busy to look up from their phones while crossing the road!