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Frequent viewing of mail leads to stress

17 December 2014, 09:00

Today, many people are in real dependence on modern electronic devices (computer, smartphone, etc.). Such people tend to wait for letters from work or from colleagues and constantly check the mailbox so as not to miss an important message, which, according to experts, is a real source of stress. According to psychologists, a certain pattern of behavior will help reduce the level of stress, in other words, scientists recommend viewing the work mail no more than three times a day. Experts believe that it is better to answer several letters at once, than each time to respond to individual letters.

Scientists have found that people who respond to calls from the head during non-working hours (in the evening or on weekends) are more likely to suffer from sleep disorders, headaches, poor digestion, fatigue. Such a rhythm of life, when personal life is disturbed by working moments, is dangerous for the physical and mental health of a person.

More than 100 volunteers participated in the study of this topic, two thirds of which were university students, and the rest worked in the medical, financial, computer and other fields.

In the first group, volunteers had to check their work mail no more than three times a day for a week. In the second group, participants could log into their mail as much as they thought fit. A week later, the experts changed the conditions of the experiment and in the second group reduced the viewing of letters to three times a day, and in the first group they were allowed to read letters at will.

Throughout the experiment, participants responded daily to questions about the level of stress. As a result, in a group where people checked incoming mail no more than three times a day, the level of stress was less. However, it was not easy for all participants to refuse frequent viewing of the mailbox.

According to experts, it is employers who must pay attention to this moment and change the working conditions of their employees.

Recently, people have become more used to various electronic devices, in particular smartphones, and a recent study showed that the less people use a variety of gadgets, the more they have developed social skills.

The study involved schoolchildren of the sixth grade, who were divided into two groups. About half of the children visited the camp, where it was forbidden to use gadgets, the rest of the schoolchildren was sent to the same camp after the end of the research project.

In the first days of the camp, it was extremely difficult for schoolchildren to do without the usual gadgets. At the beginning and at the end of the experiment, scientists evaluated the ability of volunteers to recognize a person's emotional state from a photograph or video.

The children were shown about 50 images with happy, angry, sad or frightened facial expressions and they had to determine the emotional state of the person in the photo. Also, students were given a video recording of interaction between people (for example, passing the exam to teachers) and schoolchildren had to describe the feelings that people experienced in the video.

As a result, the scientists found out that in five days without gadgets, the children's ability to recognize the emotional state of people had significantly improved, in contrast to a group of children who continued to use the achievements of modern technology.

Also, experts assessed the number of mistakes that schoolchildren allowed in determining the emotional state from a photograph or video. At the beginning of the study, the number of errors was 14.02%, and by the end it decreased to 9.41% (the results of the study did not depend on the sex of the child).

On average, the children who participated in the experiment played video games or watched television programs about 5 hours a day. Experts believe that for the development of social skills requires direct contact between people, in other words, face to face, and gadgets exclude such an opportunity. Scientists recommend to periodically give up virtual communication in favor of real meetings.

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Medical expert editor

Portnov Alexey Alexandrovich

Education: Kiev National Medical University. A.A. Bogomolets, Specialty - "General Medicine"

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