Video: Smartphone a killer. German psychiatrist Manfred Spitzer at TVR: No study shows that the use of computers in schools is good. On the contrary!

Overuse of the digital environment triggers mental decline. Smartphone, a killer. Psychiatrist Manfred Spitzer – event interview

The mobile phone can lower IQ by it’s simple presence. No study shows that the use of computers in schools is good. On the contrary! The more adolescents use the smartphone, the less empathy for their parents and friends. The smartphone is one of the most dangerous killers in history. “I’m not conservative, but I’m worried,” says Prof. Dr. Manfred Spitzer, a psychiatrist, psychologist, neuroscience researcher, medical director of Ulm’s University Psychiatric Hospital, Germany. presents one of the harshest analyzes on digital technology, presented in an edition event of the “Garantat 100%” show, made by Cătălin Ştefănescu.

“There is a form of mental decline caused by over use of the digital environment at an early age”

“I have no claims that I have discovered a new cause of dementia, but my idea is a simple one.” If you do not intensely educate your brain for the first 25 years of life, then it starts to decline, something happens in the brain and you get down. There is a form of mental decline caused by over use of the digital environment at an early age The term ‘digital dementia’ has been invented by Korean physicians after analyzing cases of men between two ages who have played too many computer games and now suffered from memory loss, depression, lack of concentration, and other associated things. I use the term more precisely to show that if you do not have a good education in your youth and a general way of educating your mind, if not you have access to music, sports, theater, languages, manual activities, and all the rest … The more educated the brain, the better protected of the early decline, the dementia.

Digital technology relieves us of mental effort. It gives us the means to deal with mental affairs. Before, we used our brain, now we use our smartphone. If we have to make calculations, we use the calculator. Whenever you transfer your mental activity to that, it’s like transferring energy to a device that does everything for you. You do not use your muscles anymore. It’s just like going to the gym because we know our muscles are atrophied if we do not use them. The same goes for the brain. If we do not use it, he’s not well trained. more importantly, as the brain develops, it must be trained to use its full potential. So when the digital environment interferes with the development of the young brain, its development is strongly affected. And we need to know what later risks there are. I think we need to assess these risks and that is something that has never been done so far.

The most important case is the smartphone. True swiss knives of the 21st century. We have it with us and we use it thousands of times. In South Korea, young people use it 5.4 hours a day. In Germany, if you ask, you will be told 2 hours a day. If you make calculations, you will see that 6 hours. Digital technology and especially smartphones are being used enormously and no risk assessment has been done. We should address this issue very seriously. “

The difference between Xbox and smartphone in terms of “digital dementia”

“First of all, it has been proven to be the same from a muscular point of view.” These Wii virtual consoles were studied and the conclusion was that the real move is better. Last year, with the Pokemon game they made estimates that showed that only in the US people would cross the Terra-Moon distance by 148 times, that it would be a blast, and we all will live longer etc. Well, studies have shown that the Pokemon effect on the locomotor system it lasts 5 weeks, and then the man reaches again not to move or hunt Pokemons by car, which increases the number of accidents, including those caused by pedestrians, because people were watching their phone. and it turned out that the effects were not positive, but negative. Then, the more time you spend at the playstation, the less you read, sing, go out into the world … It seems the least solid argument, but it is the most powerful one: If you spend a lot of time in the digital environment, everything else becomes irrelevant. And then, our children will not spend their time useful anymore. “

“If I leave my phone here just as is, your IQ and mine drops down”

“Sure, I have a phone and I’m sitting on the computer too.” As a doctor and a scientist, you can not work without a computer, but I’m not playing on my phone, just talking to him and reading my e-mails. Many times I keep it offline so not to distract me. In fact, it has been proven that if I leave it here and so, your IQ and mine drops down, even if it does not ring.Because we think of it. You have to make a mental effort so you do not look at the phone. It’s a measurable effort and it is proven that if you think about the phone the result of the IQ tests drops. So we know this is not good for our mental capacity Yes, as a tool, the smartphone is great, but we have to let the kids spend time with him? It’s dangerous, we do not have to do that. “

The book vs. device screen. The fundamental difference between reading and “clicking”

“On a screen the information is passing. It can be good or not. If you ask Californian students what kind of materials they want on their courses, 85% of them will say they prefer to read books, because they are sure that the authors of the book have made efforts to to gather that information, then have it been edited, and someone has invested money for printing. While in the case of a monitor screen, any crazy person can write anything. It’s proven that we learn more from a book. When learning from a “screen” you tend to read on the fly. The book provides a deep reading. You read and think about what you read. There was something called “reading.” Now people are clicking and do not think too much. So a new term appeared, called “deep reading,” which means reading and thinking. Reading through clicks is not as useful as reading. And books are read-only, so that’s why they are better “.

Children and the digital world. The connection between the phone, speech, attention deficit, the sense of lack of control

“It depends on age.” A study made on  7,000 German children showed that if mothers take care of children for one year while looking at the phone, children will have more trouble sleeping because a child wants the mother’s attention and if she does not give it, he will notice (…) Physicians have found a connection between mothers who use their smartphones and mothers who say they have a problem to put  their children to sleep.

Then, mothers give their phones to children between 2 and 4 years old. 70% of mothers in Germany do this over half an hour a day. And the more they do, the more the child will talk harder. It is known that little children do not learn words from the phone. If you are over 5, you can learn some words here. But only some. But younger children do not learn their language like this. They do not learn anything. 2-4 year-olds using phones learn harder to talk.

At the ones aged 7 to 9 there are problems of attention because the smartphone distracts them. And when you’re young, you have to learn to concentrate on one thing, without being distracted by what’s around. And when you play on the phone, there is something from different parts, some enemy that blows you in the air, etc. And to play the game well, you train your attention to be “asleep” as possible. Because you do not want to concentrate here, but on everything.

And so  the lack of attention appears.

It is proved, it’s not a point. And at age 13, the more kids use the smartphone, the more they feel they do not control their lives, the smartphone has gone into the lead. I get 200 messages with ‘Now I’m eating gum, what do you say?’, ‘I’m at the toilet, what do you say?’. All these non-messages (…) must respond within 3 minutes, otherwise you will get another message: ‘What’s wrong with you ?!’. And you’re distracted. German young people also noticed. A study was conducted on 8-12 year old children. 50% said the smartphone distracts them. 25% said they can not focus because of the smartphone. So they complained that it was not good in their lives. “

Fear and pressure in education

“I have six children, so I know sometimes you have to say, ‘Come on, try again!’ Especially when it comes to learning a musical instrument. But I have a friend who pushed his son to learn violin until the child has vomited on the violin. At that moment, the family realized it was not the best method and stopped pushing it .You should not get here .But when small obstacles appear, the child has to be a little bit pushed. If he does not like it, you can not insist. Some of my children have studied many instruments, others none, they did different things, and if you give them a lot to do, they will do it, and that heps them develop.”.

Computers in school negatively affect learning – from personal convictions to studies

“When I write books, I support all of my statements with scientific evidence. And if I’m told it’s not true, everything is going well, I ask those people to show me the studies that prove it. As scientist the most interesting it’s the counter-arguments and the evidence. You always want to know them. From a philosophical point of view, from Karl Popper Reading, that’s all. As a scientist I want to know if I’m wrong. I’m interested in the studies that show this. I read an important part of the arguments of those who say that I’m wrong. They did not resist a critical assessment. For example, there are studies that show that if you study geography on a computer or if you see a documentary and then take a geography test, you get better results with what you learned from your computer. It’s not a relevant study, but it immediately comes to the conclusion that it’s great to learn from the computer, though that was not the study about.”

There are many misconceptions that say it’s good to learn like that.

But if you read the conclusions of some thorough studies, and say so with all responsibility, none show that the use of computers in schools is good. Many studies show that, on the contrary, they negatively affect learning. It’s important! Parents, teachers and politicians need to know that.

Germany will just spend 5 billion euros for each school class to be equipped with computers and the internet. It is the perfect recipe to make German children less smart and less eager to learn. At least 20%! “.

From technology to disease

“Think about the side effects of this technology. It’s not just about reducing learning and attention but also about depression. As American girls spend more hours looking at the phone, the more suicidal tendencies they have. In the past seven years, the number of suicides among US girls has doubled. It’s a serious problem. In the UK, girls spending more than 3 hours a day on the phone are twice as likely to be depressed at age 18. Important studies showed that the more adolescents use the smartphone, the less empathy they have for their parents and friends.

Smartphone causes diabetes, hypertension, because using it means sleeping less with 1-2 hours. And it’s especially important when you use it before bed, because it has blue light that suppresses melatonin, sleep hormone. And when you sleep a little, there’s a pre-diabetes metabolism. Lack of sleep is a factor that leads to diabetes. If I sleep less, it does not matter. Even if I do diabetes now is not so serious, because it takes decades to show the negative effects. But if you are diabetic at 10-15 years, you  have all the time to develop the side effects and they appear.

And I’m not done. The smartphone has replaced alcohol as the main cause of traffic accidents. You need to know this. Moreover, false news spreads faster than truth, a recent study has shown. There are all sorts of negative consequences. People get fatter because they move less. By comparison, smoking does not mean anything. We have not yet talked about addiction. The smartphone also causes alcohol and nicotine addiction.

Gathering all these factors, the smartphone is one of the most dangerous killers in history. We talked to many people. Would you give something so dangerous to children when they are 8-10-12 years old? (…)

Bill Gates said his daughter does not have access to that. So did the head of Apple, that his nephew does not have a smartphone, because it destroys the school performance. The former head of Facebook said the smartphone is made to induce addiction, especially when using Facebook. Recently, Apple investors wrote a letter saying that this is addictive and that if 4 billion smartphone users around the world sue Apple for damages, Apple will go bankrupt. So, I’m not just saying that and I’m not conservative. I’m talking about the medical risks of using the smartphone. We have to take them seriously. “

From “I”  to iPod, iPhone, selfie, narcissism, lack of empathy

“I’m the director of a hospital for mental illness, so I’m talking to the cops who sometimes bring patients to me. I ask what changed and tell me that there have always been quarrels and fights among people. But the difference is that now, if someone ison the ground completely immobile, they still hit the poor man. Before, the bullies stopped when it came to that. This lack of empathy is something new. The studies made in the US show a complete lack of empathy in the last 10 years, an increase of narcissism, only”I” matter.  We have a ‘iPod’, ‘iPhone’. I received a camera from my dad at age 12. I loved taking pictures, but I would not even have bothered taking a pfoto of me! “

“I do not want to ban smartphones. I just want to show people the possible dangers and risks, to make sure the children do not have to suffer. Because the younger you are, the more you suffer. Parents and teachers should know this. We have to take this seriously.

In Germany, you can pilot a deltaplan from the age of 14. It is definitely more complicated than driving a car. But the car license can be taken from 18 years. Why? It is considered that you have to be responsible for operating 100 HP. At 14, you probably do not have the necessary responsibility. But to use that …

This device (smartphone) is the worst thing in the world, it’s the biggest crime scene in the world. To use this, you should be morally developed. We’ve already decided that you are not at the age of 14. Maybe we have to decide if there is an age from which you can use it, like 18 years on your car. It’s reasonable. I would say that 18 years old is a good start age. I know, I do not live in this world. “

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