Can excessive mobile dependence increase the risk of Alzheimer’s?

Smartphones have entirely changed the world of communication, and the impact of its introduction is visible on personal as well as professional lives. As per studies, excessive dependence of smartphones can affect memory. So, on world Alzheimer’s day, we try to decode whether excessive smartphone dependence can lead to Alzheimer's. However, there is no conclusive study to prove it, say experts

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Smartphones come with multi-functional tools and apps which bring uncountable benefits to people. But today, due to excessive smart phone dependence, our memory system is not being used as much as it should be.

Dr Avinash DeSousa, co-founder of Desousa Foundation said, “In the olden days, there was exposure to mobile radiation, now, it is reduced with the newer phones. Firstly, continuous phone usage at a low range or at a low battery can cause more radiation which is damaging. Secondly, continuous mobile usage leads to too much of dependence on gadgets and your own REM functioning reduces. Earlier, we relied on our memory for numbers. Today, numbers are ten digits, so we have to rely on some gadgets.”

He added, “People who use mobile continuously, lack human communication and emotional formation, which can lead to Alzheimer’s in the long run. Now-a-days, mobile apps are there to help people with Alzheimer’s. Excessive usage of is a risky. But now, we have mobile aps to help elderly people with Alzheimer’s. People can get it after the age of 65, but early symptoms are observed since the age of 55.

The greatest drawback of using smartphones is the adverse impact on people’s memory. Nowadays, people tend to forget things due to excessive use of Smartphones, said experts.

Arti Shroff, a Clinical Psychologist in Mumbai said, “There is no direct link between Alzheimer’s and the use of mobile phones. However, excessive usage of mobile use can lead to cognitive decline, as individuals become reliant on even the simplest of cognitive tasks such as remembering a phone number or calculating simple numbers.”

Dr Sagar Mundada, consultant psychiatrist based in Mumbai seconds it by saying that it is not 100 per cent proven whether excessive mobile dependence can lead to Alzheimer’s. “Now-a-days, we use your phone as artificial memory storage and don’t take efforts to remember things, which earlier we would. We don’t remember phone numbers, important details.  However, Alzheimer’s linked to excess dependency of mobile phone is not a conclusive study, informed Mundada.”

Experts offer some tips to enhance your memory, “Keep mobile activity to a minimum required amount. Don’t – rely on the mobile for all tasks, try sticking to the old fashioned way of writing notes, remembering numbers and performing mental math, instead of always relying on the mobile. Keep the mobile away when not in use to avoid radiation,” said Shroff.

According to Dr DeSousa, do not lose human communication because of excessive usage of mobile. Express your emotions rather than messaging or whatsapping.