Teens' Reliance on Technology and Human Dependence on Technology

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With the presence of technology, teenager’s lives have been more leisurely and refined. Technology is being implemented more in their everyday lives because it has been developed to be able to do the simplest task. It takes a click of a button for companies to have mass productions, a teenager to have their chores done, and long-distance friendships to link up. While many teens have obtained more comfortable in their everyday lives, technology has gained even more control over their lives. Because of this human dependence on technology devices, adolescent’s idle habits and weak thinking have augmented. However, they need to be aware of how technology can be used properly. For example, digital detox and technology addiction treatment.

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When teens choose to hand over their responsibilities to machines, they lose the ability to work diligently. Technology decreases the amount of activities people have to which causes lazy habits to spiral. Nowadays, teens will lounge at home and spend hours scrolling through the screen of their devices. Rather than getting out of the couch to run errands, prepare a meal, or greet a friend, teens would much rather delegate these simple tasks to apps and devices. Many believe that it can help save time and physical energy, but doing every task with machine is just not healthy. As stated by Patrick Hagler, a counselor for the Choices program at The Council on Recovery, “Teenagers stare down at their iPhones, or keep their eyes glued to a tablet or laptop, instead of observing the world around them.” The overuse of technology has decreased face-to-face communication and hands-on actions, to the point where teens become sedentary. Consequently, the comfortability that technology provide teens is being exchanged with skills that they may never attain.

Since teenagers have become more reliant on technology for simple tasks, this promotes their dependency on answers. According to an article in Mobile Phone Addiction and Loneliness among Teenagers written by Dr. Mrunal Bhardwaj and Miss. Sode Jaimala Ashok, “Teenagers rely upon their cell phone for all the various day to day activities not concentrating on anyone else near them.” With the easy access of the internet from personal devices, teens no longer try to educate themselves. From news, books, and articles– the internet provides all the information that one could ever need in the palm of their hands. Rather than taking the time to grasp information from a book, teens would much rather click a button for the simplified answer. Many have become too comfortable with the idea that everything will be provided to them and so they no longer value the importance of learning through efficient research. Using technology to bypass learning causes teenager’s problem-solving skills to deteriorate. Individuals are no longer learning through experience because they know they can always access the web. Ironically, the technology world has greatly advanced, which prevented adolescents from progression in the world because they can no longer even rely on their thinking.

It can be seen that the misuse of this tool can lead to addictive behaviors. The fact that technology is used for a quick and easy way to meet basic needs, makes it very much possible to become highly addicting. Katherine Lynn DeWeese from the Dominican University of California states, “Through more than 2,000 children the studies focus on the digital media use of children from ages 8 to 18. It explored the use of television, video games, music, print, cell phones, and movies.” It fulfills teens’ needs for stimulation and communication. Therefore, teenagers can turn to their devices for ways to get their tasks done and even more so, for a way to escape reality. But rather than just practical help, this has caused teenagers to disassociate from the real world. Thus, when teens abuse the usage of such a fundamental tool, it will come to a point where if it were to be taken away, they would not know what to do with themselves.

Technology might be a tool that has been used to better adolescent’s lives. It allows more work to be done at a much faster rate which renders almost every time-consuming task. Many innovative inventions have helped teenagers do things efficiently and a lot more practical. Regardless, technology has its negative impacts: mental and physical problems. “Screen time no longer means just the amount of time one spends in front of the television. Now it is an aggregate amount of time spent on smartphones, computers as well as multitasking with different devices” (DeWeese). Teenagers’ have become more reliant on these machines to overcome every minor problem they encounter and do every simple undertaking that they could have handled themselves. However, they cannot just quit depending on these gadgets, or the use of innovation in light of the amount they have gotten dependent on it. In any case, there are ways they could avoid the inordinate utilization of innovation. Moreover, they could make approaches to limit their technology tendency. It is sizable to separate and restrain their reliance on technology.

A couple of methods were suggested to confront this problem. Digital detox may be the most widely recognized one. Teenagers depend on technology as part of their life, but sometimes for a specific amount of time they have to learn to disconnect from it. To protect an adolescent’s safety and well-being, it is significant to reduce screen time. That is why digital detox represents a substantial solution. Digital detox is a way of disconnecting from any kind of technology like smartphones and computers. As stated by Newport Academy, an American rehabilitation system for adolescents with mental health or addiction problems. Digital detox is intended to ‘improve efficiency, convenience, and communication.’ Instead of relying on these devices for real-world activities, a digital detox is an important opportunity to reduce stress and focus more on interactions with others. More importantly, it will prevent addiction to technology.

Technology dependency can cause problems of mental health as well as depression and anxiety. The more adolescents have the greater chance of experiencing stress and signs of anxiety and depression attached to their devices:

“Teens who use social media and play video games are more anxious and depressed. However, experts aren’t certain whether teen depression stems from too much tech time, or if the overuse of tech is a symptom of depression. Either way, it’s a vicious cycle that creates a perfect storm for addiction to technology” (Newport Academy).

Given that technology has caused many problems, detaching and limiting adolescent dependence on technology is essential. Like any treatment for drug addiction, there is also a technology addiction treatment. Focusing on clinical approaches and experiential therapy are teen treatment programs. Clinical and experiential counseling methods focus on building healthy habits. Such therapies are meant to provide compassionate care leading to self-awareness, confidence, and self-esteem. It thus helps adolescents find balance and develop long-term positive coping skills.

Just as these two measures would greatly impact the remedy for technology addiction, but teen rehabilitation treatment would work much better for the long run. This rehabilitation treatment would work for this issue by having a much more productive time at the Technology Addiction Center instead of teenagers being on their smartphones every day. Being technology-addicted is a dangerous thing, ‘the use of technology, particularly games and social media, increases the release of endorphins and dopamine, catalyzing the desire for another rush.’ What this quote says, like any addiction, the more you continue to do it, the more dependent you become. The purpose of this treatment is to learn to live a healthy lifestyle for teenagers without their destructive behavior.

On the other hand, it is correct to say that technology detox will work for a short time. The good thing about this detox is that teens will do it on their own without doing any teenage residential treatment. Yet it can be seen as not functioning so well. It is a successful solution for a lifetime with adolescent recovery medication. Adolescents also have an option to do an ambulatory or outpatient treatment. Choosing which care will work best for them is their choice. Being a computer addict is a dangerous thing because of the signs of loss from technology that come with it. That is why it would be easier to have a lifetime service.

Many teenagers know that technology has made a great influence on industrial aspects in the society, but they are unaware that a growing dependence towards it has negative aspect on human behaviors. Technology was made as a tool, but teens have taken advantage and used it as a lifestyle. Without limiting the time spent to use digital devices, teens tend to get carried away. Individuals must find a balance in which they could use technology ethically and know when it must be on and off. Technology is in the hands of adolescent in society, not the other way around. In other words, teens are the ones in control, in which they must rely on their own capabilities as much as possible.  

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