top of page
  • BeWellAdmin

“Brainrot” to “Bed Rotting” – Managing Your Screen Time

im lowkey cooking on this blog. not me being in my influencer era. it’s giving scholar. ur gonna eat it up. +1000 aura if ur reading this pookie. 


If you understand what that means, it’s likely that your screen time is too high. In the age of online classes and TikTok, it’s easy to have a combined screen time of over 6 hours per day. Only 36.2% of Canadian university students adhere to the screen time guidelines set by the 24-Hour Movement Guidelines. These guidelines recommend limiting recreational screen time to less than 3 hours/day. There are several health benefits associated with lowering screen time and sedentary behaviour, or long periods of inactivity.  




Effects of High Screen Time  

Physical 

  • Obesity, poor blood pressure regulation, and high cholesterol – reduce the body’s ability to maintain healthy set points and functioning.  

  • Impaired stress responses – can cause cortisol dysregulation, which is responsible for alertness in stressful situations.  

  • Diabetes – associated with increased insulin resistance, potentially causing glucose imbalances.  

  • Vision problems – dry eyes, blurred vision, and eye fatigue  

  • Musculoskeletal and posture issues – particularly with small devices 


Psychological 

  • Depressive symptoms, suicidal ideations, and anxiety – exposure to negative content, unrealistic expectations, and reduced interpersonal connections 

  • Poor sleep – changes in mood, cortisol levels, and prolonged hyperactivity 

  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder-like symptoms – short attention span, impaired executive functioning, and impaired memory 


Social  

  • Social isolation – avoiding in-person events to use devices (e.g., games, social media, etc.) 

  • Harmed relationships due to increased irritability and aggression 


Making a Goal to Reduce Screen Time 

There are so many ways to lower your screen time, but the most important thing is to create and maintain realistic goals for yourself.  


  1. Assess your current screen time 

  1. Set an overall goal and break it down into increments (e.g., total goal is reducing screen time by 2 hours/week, but start with 30 minutes less than usual at first) 

  1. Prioritize essential screen time like studying, writing papers, and work 

  1. Reflect on your progress and reward yourself 


Remember, this won’t happen overnight and it’s okay to have lapses in progress.  



Retrieved from Pexels.com.


How to Lower Your Screen Time 

  1. Take breaks from the screen – when working on your laptop or mindlessly scrolling on social media, take frequent breaks 

  2. 20-20-20 rule – every 20 minutes, take a 20 second break to look at something at least 20 feet away to reduce eye strain 

  3. Go for a walk or stand to lower sedentary behaviour 

  4. Assign “screen-free” zones like the dinner table, bedroom, and washroom 

  5. Implement screen time limits in device settings 

  6. Use apps that provide rewards for avoiding screen time – try the Forest or similar apps that rewards offline activity 

  7. Use non-digital materials – for example, study using physical flashcards instead of apps/websites like Quizlet and Anki 

  8. Get family/friends to keep you accountable to your goals 

  9. Balance screen time with offline hobbies like sports, arts and crafts, and more 





References

Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology. (2021). Adults 18-64 – 24-Hour Movement Guidelines. https://csepguidelines.ca/guidelines/adults-18-64/ 

Lissak, G. (2018). Adverse physiological and psychological effects of screen time on children and adolescents: Literature review and case study. Environmental Research, 164, 149–157. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envres.2018.01.015 

Weatherson, K. A., Joopally, H., Wunderlich, K., Kwan, M. Y. W., Tomasone, J. R., & Faulkner, G. (2021). Original quantitative research - Post-secondary students’ adherence to the Canadian 24-Hour Movement Guidelines for Adults: Results from the first deployment of the Canadian Campus Wellbeing Survey (CCWS). Health Promotion and Chronic Disease Prevention in Canada : Research, Policy and Practice, 41(6), 173–181. https://doi.org/10.24095/hpcdp.41.6.01 

Comments


bottom of page