As the world becomes more digitalised, we spend worrying amounts of hours staring at our smartphones and computer screens, scrolling endlessly as time passes by.
Screen time can have a negative affect on our health, without us even realising. This article will look at how screen time affects our bodies and what the benefits are of taking time away.
How screen time impacts our health
Spending hours in front of our screens can have a negative impact on our mental and emotional wellbeing, particularly on children and young adults.
It’s suggested that high levels of screen time can enhance feelings of depression and make us feel more anxious. Plus, screen time can overwhelm your senses, reduce your attention span and your ability to focus.
Our screens emit blue light which interferes with our internal body clock. Light has an impact on the amount of melatonin our body produces, making it more difficult for us to fall asleep at night.
It’s important to stay off our phones at least an hour before bedtime to ensure we sleep more soundly, prioritising the benefits of our sleep-related hormones.
Effects on eye health
Screens cause our eyes to strain and dry out, meaning our muscles have to work harder to keep the eyes focused. Plus, devices can cause disruption to the film that protects our eyes.
Experts at Lenstore said: “Too much screen time can have an impact on our eyes. The reduced amount of blinking can cause our eyes to dry out and become tired quicker. It’s best to take regular breaks to look at things that are further away.”
“A great approach is the 20-20-20 rule. Every 20 minutes, take 20 seconds to look at something 20 feet or more away. Small changes like this, as well as ensuring your sitting position is comfortable and not too close to your screen, can really make a difference to your eye health.”
Benefits of taking time away from screens
Stepping away from the screen can help free up time to do more things with our body, such as regular exercise. Scrolling on our phones or staring at our computer screens usually happens when we’re sat down for long periods of time.
It’s incredibly important to ensure we’re moving our bodies and maintaining healthy habits. Exercise helps to tire us out, meaning we’ll have a better night’s sleep.
Yes, it’s easy for us to message family and friends on our phones. However, don’t neglect real life, in-person connections.
Engaging with family and friends helps strengthen our relationships and communication skills, encouraging a close, tight bond. Prolonged time spent on our phones can cause us to isolate ourselves away from our peers without noticing.