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How To Decrease Your Screen Time

How To Decrease Your Screen Time

Technology has become a significant part of our daily lives. We rely more on our electronic devices than ever before. With smartphones, tablets, and computers, our screen time has increased greatly, leading to potential health concerns. 

Several studies have shown that excessive screen time can lead to negative impacts on physical and mental health, including poor posture, eye strain, obesity, anxiety, and depression.

Why Should I Decrease My Screen Time?

Before we discuss how to reduce your screen time, let’s examine why it is essential. One of the main reasons is the potential health risks associated with prolonged screen time. According to a study published in the Journal of Clinical Medicine, excessive screen time can lead to poor posture, which can cause musculoskeletal pain and discomfort. Additionally, the blue light emitted by screens can interfere with our internal, or ‘circadian’ rhythm, leading to disrupted sleep patterns that affect our overall health and well-being.

Moreover, several studies have linked excessive screen time to an increased risk of obesity, type 2 diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. A study published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine found that adolescents who spent more than five hours a day on screens were twice as likely to be overweight or obese than those who spent less than two hours a day. Finally, excessive screen time can also have a negative impact on our mental health, including increased levels of anxiety, depression, and stress.

Ways To Reduce Your Screen Time

Now that we have discussed why we should reduce our screen time, let’s look at some practical tips to help us do so.

Tip 1: Set Screen Time Limits

One of the most effective ways to reduce screen time is to limit your time on your devices. You can do this by using the built-in screen time settings on your smartphone or tablet, which allow you to set daily time limits for specific apps or categories, such as social media or gaming.

Alternatively, you can use third-party apps that track your screen time and provide you with weekly or monthly reports on your usage. By setting limits on your screen time, you can create a healthy balance between your online and offline activities.

Tip 2: Take Regular Breaks

Another way to reduce screen time is to take regular breaks from your devices. Sitting in front of a screen for prolonged periods can lead to eye strain, headaches, and neck pain. 

Therefore, it’s essential to take short breaks every 20-30 minutes to give your eyes and body a rest. During these breaks, you can stretch, walk around, or engage in other offline activities, such as reading or playing with your pet.

Tip 3: Engage In Outdoor Activities

Engaging in outdoor activities is an excellent way to reduce your screen time and improve your overall health and well-being. Activities such as walking, jogging, cycling, or hiking can help you disconnect from your devices and enjoy the benefits of fresh air and physical exercise. Moreover, spending time in nature has been shown to positively impact mental health, reducing stress, anxiety, and depression.

Engaging in outdoor activities provides several benefits for both physical and mental health. Here are some of the benefits of outdoor activities:

  1. Improved physical health: Outdoor activities such as hiking, biking, swimming, and running can help improve cardiovascular health, increase strength and endurance, and reduce the risk of chronic diseases such as obesity, diabetes, and high blood pressure.
  2. Enhanced mental health: Spending time in nature has been shown to have a positive impact on mental health, reducing stress, anxiety, and depression. Outdoor activities provide an opportunity to disconnect from the digital world and connect with nature, which can improve mood and boost cognitive function.
  3. Vitamin D: Exposure to sunlight during outdoor activities can help the body produce vitamin D, essential for bone health and the immune system.
  4. Improved sleep: Exposure to natural light during the day and reduced exposure to artificial light at night can help regulate the body, and improve sleep quality and duration.
  5. Social connections: Outdoor activities can provide an opportunity to connect with others and form social bonds. Group activities such as hiking, biking, or team sports can help improve social skills, boost self-esteem, and reduce feelings of isolation and loneliness.

Overall, outdoor activities provide a range of physical, mental, and social benefits that can contribute to a healthier and more fulfilling life.

Reducing our screen time is essential for maintaining our physical and mental health and well-being. Speak to your doctor about effective ways to set limits that fit your lifestyle and mental and physical health needs.  By taking control of our screen time, we can enjoy the benefits of technology without compromising our health.

 

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