How Does the Internet Affect the Human Brain?

Technology has tremendous effects on people’s activities. Nowadays, scientists are investigating whether it is effective on the human brain.

The spread of the Internet took place less than 30 years ago. But technology has had tremendous effects on human functions. Especially; there has been a change in the way people communicate, develop relationships, and access information resources.

There was something that scientists were not sure about. What is the impact of the online world on the human brain? Researchers from five universities in the United States, England and Australia sought answers to this question.

The theory was based on the concept of neuroplasticity (the ability of the brain to change structurally over time). According to the concept of neuroplasticity; The experience and lessons we get from the internet can have a big impact on brain development.

It is particularly important to understand and recognize these changes in children and young adults. Because their brains change constantly. The World Health Organization (WHO) warned about this and recommended that children under the age of 5 should not spend more than 1 hour on screen.

Recent studies focused on three different areas. These; attention and concentration capacity, memory processing and social recognition. By evaluating the findings from previous studies, researchers were able to analyze whether the Internet was harmful or beneficial in these areas.

Multitasking and Memory Changes

Firstly, digital multitasking (ability to do more than one job at the same time) was examined. According to the evidence obtained, many different businesses do online; did not improve one’s multitasking abilities elsewhere. Instead, it made the person more vulnerable to new distractions. Unlimited notifications from the Internet are constantly distracting us, and as a result, may reduce our capacity to concentrate on one business. However, further studies are needed to find short-term and long-term effects on young people.

In the next stage, studies were conducted on memory. While previous generations have kept findings in mind, modern people leave facts-based information on the internet. This can provide some benefits to the brain, allowing it to focus on other more important tasks. However, further studies are needed on the long-term cognitive effects of the Internet. Especially considering the current navigation application, its effects on spatial memory should also be examined.

Social relations

Surprisingly; The brain seems to operate online interactions in a way similar to real life. This situation; This may be useful for older people who experience distress due to a feeling of isolation. But for young people; Increased social consequences as a result of online interactions such as peer pressure and a sense of rejection can have detrimental effects.

In the study, no cause-effect relationship was found between poor mental health and internet use. But researchers think that developments such as social media can be a form of therapy for young people with mental health problems. As a result, while the positive effects of the Internet are for older people, we cannot claim the same things directly for young people. More work is needed for young people.

Internet use can have good as well as bad aspects. In order to avoid the impact on the concentration disorder, one job can be concentrated on the Internet at a time interval. Restricting children’s use of the Internet and talking about harmful effects with children can also be helpful to avoid the negative effects of the Internet. Also in this way children; cyberbullying, dependent behavior and even abuse.

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