In the 21st century, our world has become dependent on technology. Technology is continuously developing to fit our lives and to make it easier for us to live each day and is telehealth. “Telehealth just makes life so much easier,” says psychologist Mary Alvord, Ph.D. It helps us overcome so much in terms of treatment barriers.”
Now, everything you have to do, you can do on your phone. You can work, shop, and pay bills without stepping out of your home. This has made life comfortable for us, but it also has some severe effects on our mental health, according to psychologists.
Social media has had a significant impact on our lives. We often use social media as a way to express ourselves, and we see how other people live their lives. This also made us compare ourselves to others, and often, this leads to us feeling inadequate and jealous. We try to make the most of our lives and try to keep up with what everyone else is doing to show the world – through social media – that we can also be like them. This can get stressful and depressing. The non-stop comparison tends to derail us and not make us appreciate what we have. Psychologist Melissa G. Hunt, who led a study on the negative effects of social media, had this to say: “Using less social media than you normally would lead to significant decreases in both depression and loneliness. These effects are particularly pronounced for folks who were more depressed when they came into the study.”
Also, notice how a lot of people, including children, are becoming more addicted to technology. This causes serious mental health issues, and mental illness rates have gone up over the years, especially in children. But with negativity aside, technology has also helped people who are suffering from mental illness and let them take charge of their emotional and mental well – being.
Technology: A Force For Good?
Even though mental illness has been regarded as something serious, this area still lacks funding from the government. Having a mental illness and going through treatments are quite expensive, and medications are also costly, so people tend to look for other ways for coping with their illness.
Technology has been a helping hand to people who can’t afford treatments. There are apps you could use on your smartphone or computer that provides information and services that can be customizable with each person’s needs. Some apps offer tools to help in dealing with mental issues and can significantly positively affect a person. This has been a significant development that can truly save lives.
How Can Counselors Harness Technology?
Mental health counselors have found a way to get in touch with people who have mental illness and promote apps for smartphones and computers that can truly help them get better. It can also be used as a platform for counseling and can be a way of reaching out to young people who are utilizing technology daily. It is a faster way of getting in touch and helping even when they are not physically present.
However, John M. Grohol, PsyD wrote, “Most professionals I know argue against these types of services for basically one reason — the idea that psychotherapy and everything it encompasses simply cannot be done in the same manner as it is done in the real world.”
Can Technology Negatively Affect Mental Health?
Although technology offers a wide range of activities and is a platform for socializing these days, it can significantly impact our mental health. Excessive use of technology can develop serious mental health issues like depression and anxiety. Children who are always on their phones and gadgets most of the day can develop ADHD and other behavioral problems.
Who can say that they can live without the internet? You would notice only a few people live their lives without the internet. For most of us, this is just part of our daily lives, and we have been dependent on it just like we are with food and water.
Do you notice that you go crazy looking for a wifi connection? This is the cause of having internet addiction. The feeling that you cannot do anything productive and get bored instantly when you don’t have internet is a sign that you are dependent on it. This addiction can cause a lot of problems and can affect our mental health significantly.
Social media is a platform where everybody from anywhere in the world can communicate. Here, we see and posts pictures and updates. We tend to get competitive and sometimes comparing ourselves to everybody else can develop stress, anxiety, and depression.
You are seeing other people posting pictures of themselves and getting more likes than you can make your self-esteem lower. There are a lot of issues of self-image that social media have caused and it does not have any sound effects.
Technology has many benefits, and it makes life easier. With just a click of a button, you can do anything without leaving the comforts of your home. Though there are positive effects, there will always be adverse effects, and these effects are very serious. Having mental illness due to technology is something possible, and if you don’t discipline yourself and your kids, you will most likely have an addiction. Prevent this by doing something that can strengthen your bond as a family.