Experts suggest that teens' popular mode of communication - texting has several side effects. That includes anxiety, distraction in school, falling grades, repetitive stress injury and sleep deprivation.
According to the Nielsen Company, American teenagers sent and received an average of 2,272 text messages per month in the fourth quarter of 2008 - almost 80 messages a day, more than double the average of a year earlier.
AdvertisementDr. Martin Joffe, a paediatrician in Greenbrae, California, recently surveyed students at two local high schools and found that many were regularly sending hundreds of texts every day.
"That's one every few minutes. Then you hear that these kids are responding to texts late at night. That's going to cause sleep issues in an age group that's already plagued with sleep issues," The New York Times quoted him as saying.
Texting may also be taking a toll on teenagers' thumbs.
Peter W. Johnson, an associate professor of environmental and occupational health sciences at the University of Washington, said it was too early to tell whether this kind of stress is damaging.
However, he added: "Based on our experiences with computer users, we know intensive repetitive use of the upper extremities can lead to musculoskeletal disorders, so we have some reason to be concerned that too much texting could lead to temporary or permanent damage to the thumbs."
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