Iowans, How Much Time Do We Really Spend On Our Cell Phones?
You likely have no idea who this gentleman is but you more than likely own an item he invented. Martin Cooper was the original inventor of the cell phone. Back in 1973, he came out with the Motorola DynaTAC 8000X, which you've possibly seen or can remember from the movie Wall Street, starring Michael Douglas, Charlie Sheen, and Daryl Hannah. That original cell phone looked more like a brick with an antenna than an actual phone.
The reason I bring up Martin Cooper is he recently suggested people need to get a life. He was being interviewed on a morning talk show and he mentioned he spends less than 5% of his time on his phone and was shocked when someone said they spend around 5 hours a day on theirs. He responded with "get a life!"
This got me thinking, how often is the average person on their phone, and could being on your cell phone too much be damaging to one's brain, eyes, or any other part of the body. According to Defenders Shield, there are plenty of damaging effects from overusing your cell phone.
The average American is on their phone for 2 hours and 54 minutes a day and will spend about 44 days a year on their phone. It sounds insane to me when you see the actual numbers from Reviews most recent study.
Germs - A study from Arizona University found out that cellphones carry 10x the bacteria as most toilet seats. I'm always wiping my screen off to get smudges out but when is the last time you cleaned your cell phone?
Blue Light - We have blue light everywhere in our regular lives and there are some benefits such as alertness, it regulates our circadian rhythm and can help develop children's eyes. Problems do occur when we're exposed to too much of it. Dry eyes, can be harmful to the skin on your face, can lead to headaches, and can even result in blurred vision. This is a big one for me as every single day at work I spend a long time staring at a screen. As I've gotten older I've had to buy multiple pairs of blue light glasses to protect my eyes.
Mental Health - Defenders Shield says that there is a connection between increased screen time and a rise in mental health issues among teenagers. Having social media at your fingertips, being addicted to the internet, and the negative impacts of EMF radiation all take a toll on mental health.
I'm not saying you should ditch your cell phone and never use it. There's a solid chance you're reading this article on your cell phone right now. We use them for so many different things, whether that be ordering food, ordering a Lyft, responding to work emails, texting our friends, or Facetiming family members.
Cell phones have made so many different things in our lives more convenient. I am saying it's just something to be aware of as your go about your daily life, especially if your work is anything like mine and you constantly have a screen in your face.
You can take breaks from screens throughout the day, you can set a time at night when you're going to be off of your phone, (which is when I'm most guilty) and I highly recommend getting a pair of blue light glasses if you need them. I found a pair for $20 and it's changed my life. I don't feel as mentally exhausted when I leave work for the day and I also believe it has helped me sleep better. When I don't wear them during the work day, I can definitely tell at night when going to bed.