Current issue:

The Digital Revolution and its Impact on Human Brain and Behavior

June 2020 | Vol 22 | N° 2

Editorial

Going digital: how technology use may influence human brains and behavior

The digital revolution has changed, and continues to change, our world and our lives. Currently, major aspects of our lives have moved online due to the coronavirus pandemic, and social distancing has necessitated virtual togetherness. In a synopsis of 10 articles we present ample evidence that the use of digital…

State of the art

Original Articles

Neurobiological mechanisms underlying internet gaming disorder

This review summarizes studies on the neurobiological correlates of internet gaming disorder (IGD), presently the most direct approach to analyzing the impact of digital technology and the internet on brain mechanisms. Brain imaging studies have shown that IGD shares, to a large extent, neurobiological alterations that are typical for other…

The impact of digital technology use on adolescent well-being

This review provides an overview of the literature regarding digital technology use and adolescent well-being. Overall, findings imply that the general effects are on the negative end of the spectrum but very small. Effects differ depending on the type of use: whereas procrastination and passive use are related to more…

Enhancing relationships through technology: directions in parenting, caregiving, romantic partnerships, and clinical practice

Media coverage of research on phones and social media over the last decade has prompted widespread concern and one-size-fits-all guidance to limit screen time. Recognizing the limitations of screen time as a metric, researchers are now studying technology use in terms of affordances, individual differences, and longitudinal patterns. The current…

Virtual reality as a clinical tool in mental health research and practice

Virtual reality (VR) is a potentially powerful technology for enhancing assessment in mental health. At any time or place, individuals can be transported into immersive and interactive virtual worlds that are fully controlled by the researcher or clinician. This capability is central to recent interest in how VR might be…

Adolescent brain and the natural allure of digital media

The growing amount of screen time among adolescents has raised concerns about the effects it may have on their physical and psychological health. Although the literature is divided on whether the effects are mostly positive, neutral, or mostly negative, it is likely that the impacts will be highly individualized with…

Adolescent development and growing divides in the digital age

Adolescents are constantly connected to their devices, and concerns have been raised that this connectivity is damaging their development more generally, and their mental health in particular. Recent narrative reviews and meta-analyses do not support a strong linkage between the quantity of adolescents’ digital technology engagement and mental health problems….

Promises and risks of web-based interventions in the treatment of depression

Major depression (MD) is a highly prevalent and severe disorder with many patients having no access to efficient treatments such as pharmaco- and psychotherapy. Web-based interventions promise to be a method to provide resource-efficient and widespread access to psychotherapeutic support. Meta-analyses summarizing studies that use face-to-face psychotherapy as a comparator…

Brain health consequences of digital technology use

Emerging scientific evidence indicates that frequent digital technology use has a significant impact—both negative and positive—on brain function and behavior. Potential harmful effects of extensive screen time and technology use include heightened attention-deficit symptoms, impaired emotional and social intelligence, technology addiction, social isolation, impaired brain development, and disrupted sleep. However,…