Excessive use of BlackBerry (BB) and other mobile communicative devices can cause physical health impact as earlier discussed in the first part of this special report. Although the “BB syndrome” is well-known for trigger finger, it can also refer to related mental health problems, especially BB addiction, which is widely spreading and can be observed from some BB users.
As warned by Mental Health Department Deputy Director-General MD Wachira Pengchan, overusing BB might lead to addiction. Similar to game-addicted children, people suffering from BB syndrome will have a thirst for the use of the smart mobile device every day, and will be grumpy when they cannot get their hands on one. Their school or work will strongly be affected owing to their poorer ability to concentrate on what they are supposed to do. Some BB users also have had their communication skills degraded.
According to MD Sukamol Wiphawipholkul from Phaya Thai 2 Hospital, BB users who tend to use BB all the time or once in every five minutes can become addicted to the smart phone. The patients tend to be oblivious to things around them very easily, while they focus their whole attention on chatting on BB. They will also fail to concentrate, bump into others very often, or, in more severe cases, have accidents.
In addition, some BB users rely on the mobile device to upload pictures and complain about things in their lives via online social networks all the time. Although it is good for stress reduction, their actual face-to-face communicative skill and relationship problem might be affected because they resort to communicating through the cyber channel excessively.
Meanwhile, Basic Education Commission Office Secretary-General Chinnapat Bhumirat has suggested parents monitor the use mobile of phones by their children. Although they are necessary in daily life, mobile phones might seriously affect the youngsters’ study if they are improperly or excessively used.
In short, to avert mental health problem and addiction caused by BB overuse, users are cautioned not to use the mobile device, especially for chatting for more than two hours each day. It is also suggested that they take up some recreational activities and communicate on other channels more often instead.