Technology Addiction - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Technology Addiction

For Dwight Carter, a blackberry is essential to business and personal survival. For Dwight Carter, a blackberry is essential to business and personal survival.
Dr. Kaye Renshaw says relying too much on technology can strain personal relationships, and cause communication breakdowns. Dr. Kaye Renshaw says relying too much on technology can strain personal relationships, and cause communication breakdowns.

You might not be able to imagine your life without a cell phone or internet access.  For some, that technology is not only a necessity, it's an obsession.

We found out what happens when people can't let go of technology.  One local counselor tells NewsChannel 10 "compulsive technology use" can isolate people from their families and friends.  We found out just how tough it is for some people in Amarillo to disconnect.

For Dwight Carter, a blackberry is essential to business and personal survival.  "I need to stay in touch. I get emails forwarded from three to four different accounts to my blackberry.  So whether it's personal, whether it's business, I get my e-mail right away, I get voicemail right away, I get faxes right away."

Carter admits it's hard for him to go any length of time without a laptop or a blackberry.  He says that when his blackberry was stolen, he replaced it in under three hours.  But he does not consider himself a technology addict: "Maybe my kids or my wife would argue but I try to maintain balance."

Dr. Kaye Renshaw says relying too much on technology can strain personal relationships and cause communication breakdowns:  "You lose the ability to interpret and evaluate the other person's body language: the voice tone, eye messages and expressions."

Carter says it's something he tries to avoid:  "When something's really important I want to know that my message and my intent get through and you can't really do that without talking on the phone or being face to face." 

So far medical professionals have not classified technology addiction as an official disorder.

Doctor Renshaw expects that to change soon because she says it's a problem that's only going to become more common.

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