In the last years electronic devices They have become an indispensable part of our lives while the negative aspects have been denounced. Since the beginning of the epidemic, Read Studying from a cell phone or computer is becoming more and more popular, and although electronic devices have greatly benefited humanity, we must ask ourselves if we are using them properly.
new A study published in the journal Scientific Reports suggest that Read at electronic devices It reduces our reading comprehension and causes eyestrain and headaches.
The study concluded that Read at smart phone Encourages overactivity in the prefrontal cortex, less frequent sighing, and less understanding reading. The reason for this lack of performance remains unclear.
The research focused on studying the reason for the decline in reading comprehension in A smart phone Simultaneous measurement of respiration and brain activity during reading in 34 healthy individuals. Each student took two tests reading in which they read a text in smart phone Or read text on paper. The two texts were passages from two novels by the same author, and the terms were balanced so that no student would read the same text twice.
While the students read, they wore devices that measured activity in the prefrontal cortex and masks around their mouths and noses to measure breathing patterns. distance readingParticipants completed a reading comprehension test that included 10 questions related to the content of the paragraphs.
“We found that, compared to reading On paper, reading on a smartphone causes fewer sighs, promotes brain hyperactivity in the prefrontal cortex, and leads to poor comprehension. Next to, Read In a smartphone affected by sighing frequency but not normal breathing, indicating that normal breathing and sigh generation are mediated by pathways differently affected by the visual environment, the report states, “These findings provide new insight into the mechanisms of cognitive function mediated by breathing.”
From reading paper to digital reading
Today more than ever, people are reading electronic devices. They consume news, study for exams and read books from a smart phoneor tablet or computer. According to the study, it ends up counterproductive because in addition to causing eye strain and headaches, it reduces our reading comprehension.
Motoyasu HonmaThe study leader and his team discovered a possible cause for this effect. The researchers focused on two factors associated with cognitive function and performance: the visual environment and breathing patterns. They suggested that the visual environment of reading On screen it can alter respiratory and brain function, which can interact to affect cognitive performance.
“There was a woman working next to me who was constantly sighing, and my investigation began wondering why she was sighing so much,” Honma said. “While researching previous studies, I became interested in the fact that sighing has a negative effect on social communication, while it has a positive effect on cognitive function. Come to think of it, you may have been using sighs unconsciously to improve your work efficiency.”
When interpreting these results, the researchers note that previous studies indicated that people sigh more when faced with demanding tasks that require greater cognitive effort. High frontal activity among students who read in A smart phone May indicate a higher cognitive load compared to reading on paper. But Read at smart phone Seems to block a sigh compared to Read on paper.
“There is previous research showing that even conscious deep breathing has a positive effect on cognitive function, so I would suggest that those who use electronic devices for long periods of time include deep breathing in some places,” Honma said. psypost.
Convenience of smartphones and more electronic devices It’s immeasurable, and I think a lot of what we do can’t be replaced by paper,” Honma told PsyPost. “However, if both smartphones and paper can serve the same purpose, I recommend paper.”
Although more research is needed on the effects of electronic devices In the case of humans, the researchers explained, “If the negative effects of smartphones are true, it may be beneficial to breathe deeply while reading, because sighs, whether voluntary or involuntary, regulate disturbed breathing.”
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