Wearables are the next big thing in tech, and we can’t get enough of them. But is there a line of overuse that we shouldn’t cross for health reasons? And what kind of side effects could we see if we do overuse them?
Some of these suggestions may surprise you, but they could cause concern as we go ahead with wearable tech.
We already know about the possibility that using cell phones constantly could cause cancer, but no one really seems to pay any attention to it. That’s probably because most studies end up with inconclusive findings, and the ones that do give an answer tend to contradict one another.
The truth is, we don’t really know whether this is a risk or not. Only one thing is for sure, and that is if there is a problem in this area, wearables will only increase it. Still, with no real evidence to say that there is a link, right now we’re hedging our bets on the side that says phone use is safe.
It’s easy to think of computer usage as being everyone sat at desks in ergonomic chairs with the correct posture, but that’s not the case. Actually, we’re far more likely to be hunched over laptops and smartphones, with tablet devices the latest scourge on good posture.
Essential reading: Wearables that monitor your posture
Looking down at a screen constantly in your hand can give you a bad back and neck, bending these parts of your skeleton to permanent effect. When using wearables, try to make an effort to correct your posture. Hold your smartwatch up to your eye, rather than constantly looking down.
Eating disorders and body dysmorphia are a huge problem for modern culture, with many people falling prey to the thought that their physical attributes are not as good as they should be. Those using health trackers may find that it’s easier than ever to slip into this thought pattern, especially where peer sharing is enabled.
It’s already been found that most people who stop using Fitbits experience guilt, and this could parlay into an eating disorder for those who are already on the edge. As with the other causes of this phenomenon, we can combat this with positive body images and with encouragement for all body shapes and sizes.
The electro-magnetic radiation which comes from cell phones has been described as a slow poison, and could be affecting our bodies in all kinds of ways. If your wearables are linked to your cell phone or use the same kind of technology, then the same concerns apply.
What is linked to cell phone usage, then? Current thoughts include headaches and eye irritation, mood swings, reduced appetite and nausea, reduced sperm count, and sleep disruption. How much of this can really be verified? As with the cancer claims, most of it is in the “maybe” region.
That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t take care, and it’s always good to remember that wearables and other tech are most effective when combined with a healthy lifestyle and satisfying social interaction. It won’t hurt to put your tech down and have an actual conversation once in a while. The less time your tech spends close to your head, the less risk there is of any ill effect.
Essential reading: Top fitness trackers and health gadgets
It seems like there aren’t many clear studies just yet on the ways in which wearables affect our health, but we can all be sensible enough to prevent serious harm. There’s more to life than tech – but of course, if you want to enjoy it to the fullest, tech definitely helps!
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