Computers have made lives way easier as compared to how it was before. Tasks done by many persons could be easily done by one, computations and analyses were made much faster and more efficient, documents were stored electronically and are easy to locate, and entertainment has been more convenient and easy to reach. Yes, the development and innovation of today’s computers have so many to offer to humanity. However, these many good things come with costs. One of the many things you would be putting on the line when being too attached to a computer is your own health.
Spending several hours sitting in front of the computer everyday poses risks to one’s musculoskeletal health. Too much time spent using the computer is certain to cause back and posture problems. This is due to the hunched position of the user in front of the computer as well as the strain caused by reaching for the computer’s peripherals like the mouse and the keyboard. It causes repetitive strain injury where certain areas if the body are subjected to repetitive motions over a period of time like typing and using the mouse. One of the most common disorders that arise would be carpal tunnel syndrome where the nerve on the wrist gets inflamed or swollen. With regards to back, shoulder and neck pain, it is not that likely that too much computer usage would cause permanent damage. However, it would cause continuous pain.
Too much exposure to the computer’s screen also causes what is known as computer vision syndrome. Computer vision syndrome is a degenerative eye problem where the patient suffers from severely reduced eyesight, blurred vision, and overall eye fatigue and may even lead to glaucoma. If that is not the case, one may suffer at least an eye strain. It happens when one strains his or her eyes by too much and continued use. Not only does eye strain arise from using the computer too much but also from watching television, reading and studying over a long period of time. It is important to take breaks from time to time.
According to studies, too much computer usage may also cause depression. However, being socially connected to other people through the Internet and social networking sites could reduce depression. However, be careful not be too addicted to the Internet. Symptoms of Internet addiction involve losing track of time while on the Internet, inability to complete tasks, isolation, and even feelings of euphoria while on the computer.
Too much computer usage may also lead to sleeping problems. The brightness of a computer monitor throws off a person’s biological clock by inhibiting the production of melatonin. Melatonin is the hormone that deals with sleeping and waking patterns. Less melatonin means having trouble falling asleep at night. Also, too much computer usage causes the body temperature to rise which hinders sleep.
Weight gain is another side effect of spending too much time on the computer. Being too engrossed with using the computer leads to a person’s physical inactivity. Sitting in front of the computer, as well as the television, for more than two hours a day could make a person be overweight.