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The Effects of Technology


Like most things, technology can be beneficial or detrimental. Driving a car can get us from point A to point B much faster than if we walked. At the same time, driving a car increases our risk of being in an accident. How we implement technology in our lives will determine whether it is positive or harmful.

Communication is a great example. Technology has made it easier for us to stay in touch with people we love. However, if we rely too heavily on technology, it can reduce the time we spend face to face, which can separate loved ones from each other. Technology may make it easier to communicate, but it does not teach us social skills.

Social media offers businesses new ways to advertise and reach customers and can help people stay in touch with family and friends. Social media also allows anonymous bullying and reduces our ability to read facial cues. Many platforms remove natural parental filters for children. Children can access inappropriate content even when kidsafe modes are selected.

Technology can enhance health care. New techniques and procedures can extend lives and improve the quality of life for many. Access to medical records improves through the use of technology. This access can make our medical records easier for hackers and other nefarious individuals to acquire.

We now have access to thousands of exercise and health improvement sources at our fingertips. Using mobile devices and computers has been associated with poor posture, eye strain, tendonitis, carpal tunnel, isolation, depression, and a sedentary lifestyle. Maybe these two effects balance each other out, but I think the adverse effects win here.

Technology offers specific advantages for children. Remote learning opportunities can benefit children of all ages. Data sharing allows researchers to see trends in childhood development that provide insight into behavior and maturation that help create strategies for treatment and advice. The overuse of technology by children can have long-lasting adverse effects. Studies show that too much screen time can lower creativity, shorten attention spans, and lead to aggressive behavior. Overusing technology by youth leads to social, emotional, and language development delays. Other studies show higher levels of obesity, technology addiction, and sleep disorders when children overuse technology.

Like most things in life, moderation is key. Avoid overuse of technology and reap the benefits, or stay glued to that screen and take your chances with the adverse effects.

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