Take a break from phones, internet is the way to go

By Saumu Jumanne

Social media has made the world so close and yet so far away. We can know what is happening in distant lands. We can follow what world famous superstars are up to in the world of politics, football, fashion, etc.

Thanks to technology, through your smartphone and the Internet, you can access information about any country at your fingertips. It has made it extremely easy to share information and knowledge. Whether it empowers or disempowers is another matter altogether.

It is essential to keep your peace of mind by monitoring what you consume on social networks.

It’s because there’s so much good and so much bad out there. They say where your heart is, that’s where your life will be.

After consuming too much depressing news or negativities for days, the result can only be depression.

Long ago, when we were growing up in the village, we could take a break and enjoy the serenity of mother earth.

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You could go to the farm, sit under a tree and connect with nature in its true form.

The blue skies, the blowing winds, the birds, the vegetation and the ground – everything made this inner peace and sense of life so real. Today we go everywhere with our phones, and for those who can afford the Internet, some are like slaves to their own phone. Over time, taking breaks from cell phones and the internet will at times become increasingly vital to human well-being.

Online today, you can see a photo of an entire family sitting together, so close to each other physically but worlds apart, as everyone is busy with their phones and lost in their worlds.

Sometimes we consume so much information that we cannot use it, which also affects our well-being.

In conversations with some parents with teenagers, one of the most recent issues is phone/internet addiction.

Some young people have become irresponsible because they spend so much time on phones, addicted to games, social media, reading gossip, etc.

We have so many “idiots” online who share fake news (information) that they don’t even understand. Research shows that “the simple act of sharing information gives people confidence, making them feel better informed about the information being shared even if they have only read the headline.” No wonder there is a rise in subjective knowledge and fake news all over social media.

Fake news has helped politicians around the world in their campaigns against their opponents.

Consciously or unconsciously, it hurts and can sometimes cause damage. Online, we also have half-truths, or people translating information from one language to another and omitting disclaimers. For example, if you Google “juice to help improve/increase blood in the body” you will get lots of stories about Roselle juice.

Several websites speak of Roselle juice as a therapeutic plant used over time.

The plant is said to treat toothaches, urinary tract infections, colds and many other health problems.

But above all, there is no warning that if the future mother uses it (some of them), it can cause miscarriage. It is safe when consumed at a moderate rate.

This means expectant mothers in Tanzania, who only use Kiswahili blogs or videos for such information, are unlikely to receive the warning, which could lead to the tragic end of their pregnancy. According to health experts, taking too much Roselle juice can lead to miscarriage, especially in the first trimester.

Even though we use the internet to gain knowledge, we should never forget that seeking professional help online is essential.

However, the knowledge gained should be from known doctors on their official websites or social media accounts. Misinformation about health issues can lead to fatal errors, including death.

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