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Impact of Smartphones on Human Health

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Smartphones are a result of innovations in technology. They bring with them expansive benefits that ease human life. Using smartphones, communication is easier and cheaper. Communication applications make communication in real time efficient at affordable rates. This way, human beings are able to monitor their friends’ lives and families as well. Despite these positive impacts brought about by smartphones, there are numerous negative effects on human health both mental and physical. In this paper, in intend to expound on these negative effects.

Negative effects of smartphones The human brain

Based on various studies, the human brain is extensively affected by the use of smartphones. Smartphones emit electromagnetic waves. These waves have negative effects on the health of humans through the human brain. Despite having being studied for long, protection from radiation occurs only in areas where exposure emanates from powerful radiations. Few to no actions have been taken towards protecting smartphone users from radiation despite using it on a daily basis.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has already categorized radiations associated with wireless gadgets as carcinogenic. An experiment by 31 scientists in 2011 in France indicated strong associations between radiations from television signals, communication gadgets, microwaves, and radio and their capability to cause cancer in human beings (VenkataKrishnaKumar & Gowthami, 2016).

In the year 2000, a study conducted at the University of Zurich revealed that smart phone radiations affect sleep patterns. While using mobile phones in bed, brain activity increases and could last up to 50 minutes. This result was obtained after 30 people were exposed to electromagnetic radiation similar to that emitted by mobile phones for at least 30 minutes before they retired to bed (AlOrainy, 2003). This clearly indicates that mobile phones actually affect human health despite denial of the same by researchers.

As research result includes accurate findings, the scientist moved their experiment to rodent. The scientist “exposes rats or mice to known doses of radiation that are equivalent to what people get to their cell phone “National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences released the lates research that 2% to 3% of irradiated male rats developed brain tumors and 2% to 7% of irradiated rats developed heart tumors. Female population is less impacted to radiation wave and it is composed of 1% of developed brain tumor and 2%of heart tumor. According to John R. Bucher, associate director of National Toxicology Program tumors were of types similar to those of other research that found radiofrequency from cell phones is a possible carcinogen. Considering the rapid changes in cell phones technology, new observation are even more complicated to conduct. Salvatore insiga, a neurosurgeon at Northwell Health’s

Neuroscience Institute in Manhasset, New York, also considers that nonetheless that there is no direct evidence of between cell phone radiation and tumor risk, the possibility still exists, and studies should be continued.Insiga suggests alternating cell phones use by use of earbuds.Studies reveals that people could reduce their exposure to cell phones radiation by using an earpiece or headset when they talk, and keeping their device away from their bodies. However , proponent of cell phone dismissed “the possibility thwt the cell phone radiation could cause cancer because it is non-ionizing and does not carry enough energy to damage DNA like the ionizing radiation in X-rays and CT scan does.”

Hands, Back, and Neck
Various studies’ results show existence of pain and straining of hands, neck, and back after use of hand held devices such as smartphones. Among Americans, at least 56 percent of all adults owned smartphones as of 2013 (VenkataKrishnaKumar & Gowthami, 2016). This particular study utilized secondary instead of primary data in the research. Therefore, the authors do not provide the location, and sample size used. From the analysis of other studies, the results indicate that smartphone owners spent at least 195 minutes on their gadgets on average daily. The number of cellphone owners continues to increase annually as more affordable products stream into the market.

According to a study conducted in Jordan among public university students, most reported pain and strain of fingers upon use of smartphones (Abu-Shanab & Haddad, 2015). The study involved 200 respondents, mainly students from public universities. For analysis of the results, the researchers used the 5 Likert scale. The study concluded that the respondents were aware of the negative effects of using the gadgets.

According to a study conducted in Jordan by Qasim, Obeidat, and Sharairi, (2017), reserachers established that prolonged usage of these gadgets causes extra tension on the muscles, tendons, and various tissues resulting in pain. The study involved 357 responses for analysis. Similarly, those using desktop computers for long hours should rest regularly and exercise. This allows muscles and tissues to relax. Headaches, hand and finger discomforts are common complaints among smartphone users. These effects are mainly a result of the poor postures of smartphone users. The scientist used Disability of Arm, Shoulder and Hand in their questionnaire in their analysis. Based on the results 27.5% were known by hand pain symptoms 44.5% were affected by mild hand pain. For moderate hand pain were 24%of them .There were 3% of them who were affected by severe and worst possible pain.

The research conducted by group of Korean scientist from Unjr University an effect cell phone on hand held device was a significant association between the total time spent using a mobile device each day and pain in the right shoulder. And between the time spent internet browsing and pain at the base of the right thumb.

Loss of Lives
In addition to other bodily effects of using smartphones, drivers using smartphones as they drive are at higher risk of harming themselves and other road users as well. According to the National Safety Council (NSC), drivers who were using their smartphones while driving caused at least 27 percent of all accidents in 2013. Drivers who were texting while driving (VenkataKrishnaKumar & Gowthami, 2016) caused six percent of accidents.

The use of cellphones while driving takes the drivers’ attention and concentration away from the road. This endangers the lives of passengers, road users and other vehicles as well. According to the NSC, the moment a driver responds to a ring or notification on their smartphone, they tend to ignore the traffic signals. This affect more teenager because they tend to respond to calls while driving and riding than adults.they are not aware because it can cost their lives.

US Government website for Distructed driving has proven that traffic crashes are the leading cause of deaths in teens.It is so certain that most people dont realize the danger until the accident occurs.Studies reveals that late night use of smartphone is associated with insomnia.It has been discovered that smartphone radiation with the production of of melatonin, a hormone that is responssible for inducing and maintaing sleep.

Vision and Ear Problems
The use of cell phones, more so smartphones has been associated with negative effects on visual and hearing abilities. According to a study by Qasim, Obeidat, and Sharairi, (2017), at laest 66.7 percent of the respondents who participated in the research reported eye itrritation. 72.5 percent reported ear problems. These results indicate the long periods that people spend on their smartphones today. Other factors that accelerate such problems include age of the smartphone users where the elderly are more vulnerable. The younger genaerations have adopted headset trends which also contribute to these issues.

A different study suggests that the relationaship that every individual has with their gadgets determines the effects as oopposed to the extent of usage. The study involved 274 respondents who took part in an online survey. The results of the study indicated that higher involvement with smart devices was corelated to stress and depression but not anxiety. This study presents a completely different analysis from the other studies reviewed in this paper (Harwood, Dooley, Scott, & Joiner, 2014).

Most smartphone users headphones to listen to musics and they tend to increse lots of volume in order to feel the beats of the music.loud volume from the earphones damage the ear such that one cannot be able to to hear background sound.Moreover loud sound may damage the hair cell that are responsible for perceiving sound signals.This damage is permanent because the hair cell do not regrow.Most people do nont know about this information and may cause to hearing loss.Although it does not occur intantly , it occers slowly over time.The more exposure to loud music ,the more the damage the earlier the deafness will occur.

Anxiety and Depression
Spending so much time on the phone can lead to anxiety,because people expect so much updates and interactions from friends ,once they don’t receive they tend to develop depression ,it may lead to stress.A study from Northwestern university reveals that the more time people spend on smart phone the more likely they are to be depressed.The avarage daily use for a depression person was 68 minutes,compared to just 17 minutes for someone who has better mentall health.Having a smart phones means always available to text, messages,calls and emails.research from 2012 has found that the need to immediately read and respond to emails or texts cause rise of stress level.

Social life
A clear illustration of the negative effect is the way people have turned to using their smartphone at their free time intead of socialing with physical friends, or interact with thing that are important ,outdoor activities.consiquently social ties have been broken and people live lonely lives with their sole companion being the smartphone.Its isso sad people in this days do not care about others more especially neighbours.It has also led to poor relationship between couples. When a person engage most of their time in a cell phone heor she has no time for their patners.for a relationship to thrive people must talk and put their smrtphone aside.it make one partner feel less appreciated , and no attention at all.This disconnection affects childrens life (Annasandifer, 2012). They learn from their parents that socializng is not worththe time and chatting over the phones is more enjoyable.Today society has changed greatly. People spent most their time on smart phone rather than visiting friends or reading books.

Bad work habit
People use smartphone at their work places. Work places discourages use of phones and paying more attetion to clients or serving them addiquately.However many people use smartphone in their office to mail and text their friends such people rarely pay attention to their work, they sometimes ignore their clients while using their phones.Consiquently, many complaints arise with regard to their of services received from such offices.It is a such bad behaviour and it makes office interaction informal which should not be the case.

Education centre
Students who carry their smartphones to class spend most their time texting and browsing instead of paying attention to the teacher, therefore the level of poor performance in school is very high (Kransz, 2014). Lack of attention may attributed to lack of sleep at night due to the use of smart phone.therefore such students may end up with loss of memory and thus poor perfomance. Students end up not doing their assignment because they spent too much time on their phones.this may also lead to addiction .

Creativity has been lost, in order to think creatively the mind has to be subjected to free moments. However, the smart phone users the mind is always fused to the screen. It does not leave time for the mind to generates creative thoughts. In this case there are minimal physical interactions.To this respect verbal communication is greatly impared.

As highlighted within this paper, it is clear that smartphones have real negative effects on the human health. Researchers through various experiments have validated these effects. Electromagnetic waves can cause brain damage, sleep disruption, and possibly cancer. Due to prolonged usage of smartphones, more users complain of pain in the neck, back and hands. Strain on the fingers is also evident. Eye and ear problems have occurred from repeated use of smartphones and accompanying devices. More importantly, used of these gadgets while driving can cause death or maiming of passengers, phone users, other road users, and pedestrians


Abu-Shanab, E. A., & Haddad, E. (2015). The Influence of Smart Phones on Human Health and Behavior: Jordanian’s Perceptions. International Journal of Computer Networks and Applications, 2(2), 52-56. AlOrainy, A. (2003). Recent Research on Mobile Phones Effects. Proceedings of the International Conference on Non-Ionizing Radiation at UNITEN (ICNIR 2003). Retrieved from http://www.who.int/peh-emf/meetings/archive/en/paper09alorainy.pdf

Harwood, J., Dooley, J. J., Scott, A. J., & Joiner, R. (2014). Constantly connected – The effects of smart-devices on mental health. Computers in Human Behaviour, 267-272.
Miakotko, L. (n.d). The Impact of Smartphones and Mobile Devices on Human Health and Life. Retrieved from http://www.nyu.edu/classes/keefer/waoe/miakotkol.pdf
Qasim, T., Obeidat, M. S., & Sharairi, S. (2017).

The Effect of Smartphones on Human Health Relative to User’s Addiction: A Study on a Wide Range of Audiences in Jordan. International Journal of Medical, Health, Biomedical, Bioengineering and Pharmaceutical Engineering, 11(5), 282-285. VenkataKrishnaKumar, S., & Gowthami, S. (2016). Impact of Smartphone: A pilot study on positive and negative effects. International Journal of Scientific Engineering and Applied Science, 2(3), 473-478.

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