Best Practice

The influence of the smartphone: Part 6

Smartphones are changing the cultural influences on children’s development. In the final part of her six-part series, Dr Stephanie Thornton considers the links between smartphone use and teenagers’ health

Are mobile phones bad for teenager’s health? As discussed in previous articles in this series, using mobile/smartphones can certainly damage concentration and academic performance, can alter socio-emotional strategies, can lead to depression and anxiety – but do they also have a direct impact on physical health?

There are those who argue that mobile phones offer an unprecedented scope for supporting physical health. Smartphones offer a wide range of health apps from sleep and diet monitors to exercise and yoga programs – apps incentivising a wide range of healthy behaviours.

There are also apps designed to help teenagers, their families and doctors monitor and manage health problems such as diabetes more effectively.

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