Too much screen time: Negatives effects of using your devices all day

Negative effects of using your digital devices too much (image sourced via Pexels / Photo by eren)
Negative effects of using your digital devices too much (Image via Pexels/Eren)

Our digital devices are close to us at all times. Looking at our phones from as soon as we wake up till we drift off to sleep contributes to hours of screen time that eventually affects both our physical and mental health.

Using the screen too much leads to many health concerns, like anxiety and depression, along with serious health issues like sleep deprivation or an increased risk of obesity.

Long screen time doesn't only affect adults but also children. It's extremely important to monitor your kid's screen time along with your own to avoid any negative health effects.


Negative side effects of screen time

Negative effects of screen time (Image via Pexels/Photo by Nathan)
Negative effects of screen time (Image via Pexels/Photo by Nathan)

Following the drastic changes everyone went through during the COVID-19 pandemic, the world quickly shifted to online mode.

From children to adults, everybody became victims of hours of screen time, which wasn't an easy transition. The worst of the pandemic is over, but some habits remain the same.

According to a study by Rebecca Moody, an average American person typically spends around seven hours using their digital devices, which can lead to several health issues, like:

1) Obesity

Obesity due to too much screen time (Image via Pexels/Towfiqu)
Obesity due to too much screen time (Image via Pexels/Towfiqu)

It may not come as a shock that sitting in front of your screen for 7–8 hours a day may not be the healthiest way to maintain your weight.

The more time you spend playing a video game, working on your laptop or even chatting with your friends online, the more it puts you at a higher risk for obesity.

Having too much screen time also puts you at a higher risk of diseases like diabetes and increased blood pressure level.

2) Depression and anxiety

Depression due as a negative effect of using your phone too much (Image via Pexels/Gerd)
Depression due as a negative effect of using your phone too much (Image via Pexels/Gerd)

According to a study from San Diego State University, too much screen time was linked to an increased risk of depression, anxiety and even suicidal tendencies.

Too much screen time also contributes to reduced levels of self-esteem. The more time you spend online, the more critical you get of yourself when you start comparing the way you look to what you see online, which more often than not isn't completely reality.

3) Violence

Aggression due to media exposure (Image via Pexels/Adrian)
Aggression due to media exposure (Image via Pexels/Adrian)

Excessive media exposure to violence might desensitize youngsters to brutality, which is especially common in children. Hence, it's recommended for parents to keep an eye on what kind of content their kids are consuming.

As a result, youngsters may come to accept violent behavior as a normal way of dealing with situations.

4) Sleep deprivation

Sleep disturbances caused by prolonged phone usage (Image via Pexels/Miriam)
Sleep disturbances caused by prolonged phone usage (Image via Pexels/Miriam)

Because the blue light produced by digital screens interacts with the formation of melatonin, a sleep hormone, in the body, the duration of digital screen time you spend has an immediate effect on the amount of sleep you get.

If you surf through social media late at night, work on your computer late or simply watch television before bed, your system struggles to create melatonin, which, as a result, disrupts the quality of sleep.

5) Addiction

Dopamine addiction (Image via Pexels/Wsdidin)
Dopamine addiction (Image via Pexels/Wsdidin)

Have you ever caught yourself being zoned out while your fingers mindlessly scroll through Instagram reels?

Spending too much time on your phone makes the brain an addict. It craves dopamine, which is the hormone that makes you crave for certain drugs or alcohol when you're trying to quit.

Whenever we see something that makes us laugh or gets a desired reaction to our pictures, we feel that dopamine hit. That's the reason we scroll through our screens all day looking for that boost in our dopamine level.


Electronic devices are both a blessing and a curse. As much as we need it for our daily needs, avoiding the negative effects of using your phone or laptop too much is a necessity.

The aim should be to find a sweet spot where you can milk out the benefits of ever-evolving technology and also take care of both your physical and mental health.

Edited by Bhargav