New research shows how addicting technology really is

The new age of social media and the smartphone make communicating with anyone a breeze. We now have instant access to emails, text messages and Twitter, so we are never out of the loop.

 Having cell phones may have made getting in touch easier, but it has also made us dependent on our phones. Psychology Today recently released a new study that shows how overuse of your phone is linked to your brain function and the release of dopamine.  

Produced by Albina KhouzinaDopamine is the hormone responsible for mood, sleeping, motivation and enjoyment. The hormone has always been associated with the “pleasure” part of the brain, and associated with food, sex and drugs. The latest research shows that dopamine is actually responsible for seeking behaviour, it causes you to want and desire.

A new study says people are having trouble letting go of their phones, because they are getting a good feeling from it.

Photo by Albina Khouzina

This is important as dopamine fuels you to search for information, and with the Internet, Twitter and text messages you now have the instant gratification for the desire to seek. Texting someone, searching for information on Google and checking Facebook gets your brain into a dopamine-induced loop.

The hormone gets you looking and the abundance of information that you receive rewards you, making you look even more and makes it harder to stop constantly checking your phone.

Not only do we get instant reward with all the technology, brain scans also show the anticipation of that text or email gets the brain wanting even more.

akhouzina@cjournal.ca