Mental Health and Technology: New age Challenges
Our relationship with technology is one of the most defining aspects of our life. In last few months, it is the technology which has helped us with social interaction, accessing news/information, forming new friendships, online meetings and classes. It is the only mode of emotional ventilation where we are able to share our concerns with people we are comfortable with. Also, technology has become the major source of our entertainment.
But most of us were pushed online, even the one who hardly used it. But teens spend more time online than anyone else. They have made social networking sites and online gaming as integral part of their life. According to a survey published by McAfee in 2014 titled ‘Tweens, teens and technology’ revealed that 71% teens interacted online with people they don’t know in person, 64% admitted to having created fake profiles to appear more likeable and mature, while 46% admitted “they put themselves in danger to see more engagement/activity on their posts.” Even the young children can be seen spending increased time online. This has increased the incidents of cyber - bullying, poor mental health, access to adult content, harassment and body shaming. Certain posts on Facebook,
Instagram, and YouTube have great impact on the mental health of the child and adolescents, like: the nature of the messages being circulated, the videos, the chats, roasting (the adult content), the video games (aggressive and violent in nature) and so on. The research says that it is the content which we watch has major and long-term effect on our psychological health, i.e. our thoughts, the feelings, the behavior, the way we treat others online or offline and so on. The content and the increased use of technology can lead to major psychological concerns like gaming disorder, internet addiction, internet induced ADHD, you becoming violent, intolerant and so on.
If you want to see how it is affecting you, you just need to do a small exercise. Draw a smiley if the content you are watching is helping you
- To grow in a better being.
- Is improving your behavior.
- Is adding quality to your thoughts.
- Is helping you to manage your emotions.
- Is helping you connect with people emotionally
- Is helping you to respect others.
If not, then give a sad face. The more the number of smiles, the more quality you are adding to yourself.