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Mental Health and Technology

Any individual practising in mental health or has a keen interest in the same studies how growth in various areas affects an individual’s mental health.



Changes in the environment bring about changes in the way an individual interacts with one’s environment. There are advantages and disadvantages at both ends. So primarily understanding the advantages and disadvantages in both aspects and bringing about balance curating it subjectively can help maintain mental health while transitioning. Presently, out of the many changes that we see in different areas, technology is growing rapidly and influencing other areas through its growth. Let us look at a few advantages and disadvantages that its growth has on one’s mental health.


1. Time



Advantages:

Before we go to sleep, most of us think about the next day’s timelines. We think about when to wake up so that all the things to accomplish fit well into the schedule. For others, it could be just about the near edge. Whatever our requirement, accordingly, we can set time in our alarm clocks/reminders. So basically, moving around our timelines has become much easier because of the smart gadgets’ built-in alarm clock.

Disadvantages:

Looking at the disadvantage, one can become dependent on the alarm clock to wake up on time. It is preferable to use an alarm clock initially to help us eventually wake up naturally at a specific time. Using an alarm clock regularly can disrupt the body rhythm and create confusion in mind. Moving around our timelines, constant reminders, and looking at the time each time can stress one out. It does not help one to be fully present with what one is doing.


2. Food



Advantages:

Earlier, in India, every family held a piece of agricultural land and grew their food. Each family did everything by themselves, starting from procuring seeds, sowing them, to harvesting them. They collected means to prepare this food. The utensils were not the way it is today nor the tools to ignite fuel. Today, groceries and other supplies are available easily with a touch on our mobile phone. This has been possible because of the advent of technology in the areas of agriculture and other industries. We can invest our time in doing other things and exploring various other options.


Disadvantages:

The disadvantage of this aspect is that as a consumer, we don’t know what we consume until we choose to consciously know about it. Today, most of us have forgotten the names of most of the crops grown within our vicinity, the chain of how it reaches us, and in what state. Since we are not aware of it, we don’t know how it will react within our bodies. We sometimes feel that something is healthy for us, which might not be the case, and marketing confuses that. Intake of packaged foods has increased, thereby affecting our mental and physical health.


3. Travel and Work



Advantages:

This moment you think about going out, and you know that the means to travel would not be an obstacle. Today, one can reach places at a far-off distance within hours which was not possible earlier. Places that one can reach in hours today would take months to reach in the past, and plans were not made easily. When it comes to work, technology has taken over a lot of work that was earlier done manually, thereby saving expenses and time. As many of us might have experienced during this pandemic, technology has helped us connect globally for work, social relationships, and service.


Disadvantages:

The disadvantage of this aspect is that one can become dependent on the vehicles to move around places. One might miss out on the option of covering the distance by walk, which can prove beneficial for the body. To fetch something from a nearby store, we choose to travel by vehicle, which is not good for one’s health and leads to pollution. Even with coming to work, dependency becomes an obstacle when we miss out on the real connection with people around us. We might get engrossed in the virtual world connecting the social world. Health problems and mental problem areas have also been on the rise due to excessive use of technology.



As we can observe, a transition phase gives us a chance to make it an advantage or disadvantage. Maintaining balance is often the key so that technology serves us and we don’t become slaves of technology.

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