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The Impact Of Fexting On Your Health

Affinity Health, a leading provider of high-quality health coverage, explores the impact of ‘fexting’ on health and strategies for promoting healthy communication in digital interactions.

“In the digital age, texting has transformed how we communicate, offering instant access and responses. However, this convenience comes with drawbacks, especially when it involves disputes or disagreements,” says Murray Hewlett, CEO of Affinity Health.

“Fighting over text, known colloquially as ‘Fexting’, tends to exacerbate the worst aspects of any disagreement, leading to misunderstandings and heightened emotions.”

Why Fexting Fails

Arguing through text can sometimes strip away the human element, making it easier to say things you wouldn’t usually say face-to-face. Without the visual and auditory cues that remind us we’re interacting with another person, it’s easy to detach and become harsher, much like people often do in online comments.

When communicating via text, you also miss out on seeing the immediate impact of your words. For example, if a face-to-face argument brings your partner to tears, you’d likely soften your tone or offer comfort. However, text messages don’t provide these critical emotional cues, which can unintentionally exacerbate conflicts.

Moreover, you never really know what someone else is doing when they receive your message. If they are already having a busy or stressful day, your text might be received poorly, influencing their reaction to the conversation.

Texting’s permanent record can also complicate future interactions; unlike verbal conversations, text arguments are documented and can be revisited, potentially reigniting past disputes.

Physical Effects of Stress from Fexting

Beyond its psychological and emotional effects, the stress from fexting can also manifest physically.

Chronic stress is linked to a range of health problems, including heart disease, weakened immune response, and gastrointestinal issues. Exposure to prolonged stress can disrupt sleep, increase fatigue, and lead to mood instability.

Individuals involved in fexting might experience physical symptoms such as muscle tension, headaches, and stomach discomfort, all of which can aggravate the distress caused by ongoing digital conflicts.

When Is Fexting Okay?

Fexting can sometimes be positive. For trivial matters, such as a misunderstanding over a grocery list, it can be an efficient way to express disappointment without waiting for a face-to-face discussion.

Fexting can also offer benefits if handled thoughtfully. It allows time to gather and express thoughts clearly, which can be particularly advantageous for those who prefer to think before speaking.

5 Tips for Avoiding Fexting Pitfalls

  1. Practice Mindful Communication: Before sending a text message, take a moment to consider the tone and content of your message. Avoid sending impulsive or emotionally charged messages and strive to communicate with empathy and understanding.
  1. Practice Mindful Communication: Before sending a text message, take a moment to consider the tone and content of your message. Avoid sending impulsive or emotionally charged messages and strive to communicate with empathy and understanding.
  2. Take Breaks and Set Boundaries: If a conversation becomes heated or escalates into an argument, consider taking a break from texting to cool off and collect your thoughts. Set boundaries around texting frequency and response times to prevent excessive communication and minimise stress.
  3. Use Voice or Video Calls: When emotions run high or complex issues arise, consider transitioning to voice or video calls to facilitate more nuanced and empathetic communication. Hearing the tone of voice and seeing facial expressions can help clarify intentions and resolve conflicts more effectively.
  4. Seek Support: If fexting becomes a recurring pattern in your relationships, consider seeking support from a therapist, counsellor, or mediator. Professional guidance can help you develop healthier communication skills, navigate conflicts, and strengthen interpersonal connections.
  5. Prioritise Face-to-Face Interaction: Whenever possible, prioritise face-to-face interaction over texting to foster genuine connection and intimacy in relationships. In-person conversations allow for richer communication and deeper understanding, reducing the likelihood of misunderstandings and conflicts.

About Affinity Health

Affinity Health is South Africa’s leading health coverage provider, offering you a range of options at affordable rates, including access to the widest national provider network. We understand the importance of having medical insurance that meets your needs, budget, and lifestyle. Our healthcare products are designed to protect you and your family when it matters the most. We strive to give our clients peace of mind and the highest standard of service. For more information, follow us on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.

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