Sometimes where I hear a beep or alert sound, I stop and think, “Is that my phone? A notification on my laptop? My iPod?” In a matter of a decade, our lives have gone from being relatively quiet to being punctuated with beeps, ringtones, alert noises and vibrations that seem to blend together into an electronic soundtrack of our tech-obsessed lives. In the midst of all of this, one has to wonder: Is it too much for our brains to handle or process? According to an infographic published by OnlineUniversities.com, it is.
OnlineUniversities.com gathered data from various sources to determine the amount of “digital stress” that is being put upon our brains. According to their research, the average computer user visits 40 websites a day, switches programs 36 times in an hour and consumes an average of twelve hours of media a day! With this in mind, you may want to think twice the next time you decide to spend an hour (or three) watching videos on YouTube: Studies show that excessive Internet usage may lead to atrophy of grey matter, which affects concentration, memory and the ability to make decisions and accomplish multiple goals. Furthermore, multitasking with digital media also causes difficulty in switching from task to task, filtering out irrelevant information and pulling information from short or long-term memory. Scary, right?
Check out the infographic below for more details about how digital stress is affecting our brains. If anything, be sure to check out the very bottom of the infographic for some great tips on how to help alleviate this stress. While designating certain times to check Facebook and send emails may seem daunting at first (it did for me), your brain will thank you for it later on.