Using your phone too much can decrease your brain activity - here's why
Both the popularity and availability of smartphones has dramatically increased in the past years, but are we using them too much?
Smartphone addiction physically changes the shape and size of the human brain in a similar way to the organ of a drug addict, a new study has found.
Published in the journal Addictive Behaviours, a team of researchers from Heidelberg University used magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to examine the brains of people with smartphone addiction (SPA).
The team examined 48 participants using the MRI images - 22 with smartphone addiction and 36 non-addicts.
Smartphone addiction may lower your grey matter volume
The results revealed that those addicted to their smartphones have lower grey matter volume in some key parts of the brain. They also saw decreased activity in the brains of smartphone addicts compared to non-addicts.
Similar patterns and trends of dwindling grey matter have been recorded in the mind of drug addicts.
"Compared to controls, individuals with smartphone addiction (SPA) showed lower grey matter volume in left anterior insula, inferior temporal and parahippocampal cortex," the authors explain.
Decreased grey matter is one of the regions, the insula, have previously been linked to substance abuse.
The insula is a portion of the cerebral cortex that controls our self awareness
Increased risk of smartphone addiction
They add that this is the first physical evidence of a link between smartphone use and physical alterations to the brain.
"Given their widespread use and increasing popularity, the present study questions the harmlessness of smartphones, at least in individuals that may be at increased risk for developing smartphone-related addictive behaviours," the authors conclude
Smartphone addiction is a growing concern among scientists and medical professionals as children especially spend more and more time on the handsets.
More News in health
Children exposed to household cleaning products in early life are found to be more at risk of childhood asthma and wheeze. Asthma is a chronic disease affecting 3.8 million Canadians with over 300 new
In New York City, a man assaults a woman wearing a face mask, calling her a "diseased b****." On a Los Angeles subway, a man proclaims Chinese people are filthy and says "every disease has ever
Friday Feb 21, 2020 Photo: AFP According to a recent study conducted by German researchers, smartphone addiction does to your brain what drug addiction or substance abuse does. In this age, it's
Bay Area Lyme Foundation, a leading sponsor of Lyme disease research in the U.S., today announced the publication of new data finding that seven herbal medicines are highly active in test tubes against B. burgdorferi,