Since the PANDEMIC, everyone has the right to take a digital break-in their company. This shows whether the harmful effects of “always-on” are taken seriously. Better managing our link to the laptops that have invaded our daily lives is becoming really important.
We are more and more swallowed by our smartphones, computers, or tablets. Shall we put them on standby? Not so simple… First of all, professional obligations keep many of us beyond working hours. Then we spend more and more time there for our leisure and pleasure. So much so that it is sometimes difficult to resist the temptation to surf at all hours. What do the doctors think? Spending hours in front of screens is not yet considered a true medical addiction, but some experts still speak of behavioral addiction.
However, there are very different situations that do not lead to the same forms of addiction. You can thus get used to being in front of your screen almost continuously, to find information or fill in the downtime. Which legitimately leads to feeling dependent.
While the time spent in front of the needs of work is rather felt as a constraint. “You can also be happy not to open your emails on weekends or on vacation. The situation poses a problem when you cannot help but do it to reassure yourself, because you are stressed, that you need your dose of adrenaline linked to an intensive professional rhythm.” We then speak of “workaholism”, in other words of work dependence, which is another story.
FROM WHEN ARE YOU ADDICTED?
We can speak of an invasive or even addictive practice beyond 3 and especially 5 hours per day or 35 hours per week! But it all depends on the way it is experienced.
The criteria of addiction: the feeling of losing control of one’s behavior when the desire and the need prevail over the reason; a negative impact on social, personal, or professional life; and the resulting suffering. For example, 80% of executives connect more than ten times a day to continuous news sites and 90% of them then declare themselves anxious and demoralized. It is therefore up to everyone to assess the impact of their practice.
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WHAT ARE THE POSSIBLE EFFECTS ON MENTAL HEALTH?
Addictive driving can lead to a feeling of emptiness when the screens are turned off, or uneasiness and guilt when you are in front too long. It also increases anxiety, mood disorders, and hyperactivity. But it remains difficult to distinguish between the responsibility of screens in the appearance of problems of this kind and that of pre-existing psychic pathologies favoring precisely this addiction.
WHAT ABOUT PHYSICAL HEALTH?
“When posture is poor, pain can appear in the neck, back, shoulders, elbows, or wrists. Food is also affected: some skip meals, others eat too much and most nibble, leading to unwanted weight gain with visceral fat deposits and even leads to metabolic imbalances”. explains Shivani Sikri, Nutritionist & Wellness Expert at Nutri4Verve.