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Going digital: how technology use may influence human brains and behavior

Authors
  • Thibaut, Florence
Type
Published Article
Journal
Dialogues in Clinical Neuroscience
Publisher
Les Laboratoires Servier
Publication Date
Jun 01, 2020
Volume
22
Issue
2
Pages
93–97
Identifiers
DOI: 10.31887/DCNS.2020.22.2/mhoehe
PMID: 32699509
PMCID: PMC7366947
Source
PubMed Central
Keywords
License
Green

Abstract

The digital revolution has changed, and continues to change, our world and our lives. Currently, major aspects of our lives have moved online due to the coronavirus pandemic, and social distancing has necessitated virtual togetherness. In a synopsis of 10 articles we present ample evidence that the use of digital technology may influence human brains and behavior in both negative and positive ways. For instance, brain imaging techniques show concrete morphological alterations in early childhood and during adolescence that are associated with intensive digital media use. Technology use apparently affects brain functions, for example visual perception, language, and cognition. Extensive studies could not confirm common concerns that excessive screen time is linked to mental health problems, or the deterioration of well-being. Nevertheless, it is important to use digital technology consciously, creatively, and sensibly to improve personal and professional relationships. Digital technology has great potential for mental health assessment and treatment, and the improvement of personal mental performance.

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