Technology came into our lives to make them easier, but also brought along with it a host of problems that were previously unheard of.
As they say, too much of anything is bad and let’s face it, we are addicted to our gadgets.
Backaches, bad posture, headaches, insomnia and eye strain are among the rather long list of the side effects of technology.
More than anything, it is our posture that has suffered.
Initially, only computers and laptops were blamed, but now cell phones and tablets have also come into the equation.
According to a survey of 3,000 adults, 84 percent of 18-24 year olds claim to have suffered from some kind of back pain in the last year.
People hunched over their phones and tablets is a common sight these days, regardless of the age bracket.
Doctors in the United Kingdom have started calling it the “iPosture.”
“It is likely that slumping and hunching over computers and hand-held devices is a contributory factor in the different types of back pain reported by different generations,” says Dr. Brian Hammond. “Younger people are far more likely to be hunched over a device on a sofa, and would benefit from paying close attention to the basics of good posture.”
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
In 2010, Annie Levitz, a Chicago-based16-year-old, was diagnosed with carpal tunnel syndrome caused by too much texting.
She started feeling shooting pains and tingly, numb sensations in her hands. When the condition started to interfere with her ability to even perform everyday functions, she sought medical help.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS) is a stress-related injury caused by repetitive movement of joints, especially the wrist. It is fairly common among IT professionals and students.
Computer Vision Syndrome
Frequent computer users usually end up suffering from Computer Vision Syndrome, which is a degenerative eye problem which can result in severely reduced eyesight (Myopia), blurred vision, overall eye tiredness and even Glaucoma.
When using a computer, it is necessary for the user to be within at least two feet of the monitor.
iPods and MP3 players are putting people's hearing at risk. A study in Australia showed that nearly 70 per cent of 18 to 24-year-olds and 72 per cent of 25 to 34-year-olds suffer from tinnitus, or ringing in their ears.
The report also found that 60 percent of people who regularly listen to music through headphones pump the volume beyond safe levels.
Blackberry thumb, iPod finger
Sore thumbs and aching wrists are common signs of excessive mobile phone or iPod use. Termed as "BlackBerry thumb" or "iPod finger", also a kind of repetitive strain injury (RSI), have become increasingly common.
The American Society of Hand Therapists has issued a consumer alert recommending frequent breaks during emailing and resting your arms on a pillow for support.