Friday, 01 February 2019 14:47

TECHNOLOGY ADDICTION?

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Do you spend too much time on your phone, the internet or your computer? Do you feel anxious when you are without your preferred device? Technology is everywhere and psychologists are now in the process of studying if people can actually become addicted to their devices or if our prolonged use is just a habit. Psychology Today states that an, "Addiction is a condition in which a person engages in the use of a substance or in a behavior for which the rewarding effects provide a compelling incentive to repeatedly pursue the behavior despite detrimental consequences." People who believe that technology can be an addiction, similar to gambling or even drug use, are concerned that it can cause depression, anxiety, sleep deprivation and lower life satisfaction. In fact there are now treatment centers to help people with their technology addiction. However, others believe that our use of technology is just habit formation defined as, "the process by which new behaviors become automatic." Those who believe it is a habit think of it as something people can easily control and see the term "addiction" as extreme moniker especially when comparing it to drug use. According to Christopher Ferguson,"Technology use causes dopamine release similar to other normal, fun activities: about 50 to 100 percent above normal levels. Cocaine, by contrast, increases dopamine 350 percent, and methamphetamine a whopping 1,200 percent." Is technology addiction the most recent scapegoat for societies problems? Whatever your personal stance be habit, addiction or somewhere in the middle the only thing that scientist agree on is that there isn't enough real statistical information yet to tell them either way.