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The risk of digital dependence

The risk of digital dependence

POSTED: Monday, July 15, 2013 - 10:25pm

UPDATED: Monday, July 15, 2013 - 10:29pm

A new term has been floating around social media lately: digital dementia.

It's the deterioration in cognitive thinking seen in those with heavy reliance on technology.

"There's something going on with people who have grown up using technologies that just isn't right," said Qualified Dementia Care Specialist Tom Holmes.

Digital dementia was coined in South Korea by a doctor researching brain development in connection with technology.

He found that heavy users are likely to develop the left side of the brain, leaving the right side underdeveloped or unused.

"That part of your brain that is responsible for remembering and recalling phone numbers is going to become weaker," Holmes said.

The Korean doctor said the symptoms of this 'digital dementia' mirrored those with head injuries or psychiatric illness.

But qualified dementia care specialist Tom Holmes says more research needs to be done before labeling it a form dementia.

"It may be something else," Holmes said. "A new phenomenon or cognitive deficit that is created by this technology."

So maybe we do rely a little too much on technology. Can we fix the problem?

Holmes said to keep your brain active, make a conscious effort to socially interact with others and keep your mind stimulated.

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