Media Binge and Fast (the ADD/ADHD perspective)
Hello. This weeks media assignment of indulging in as much screen time as possible and then pushing it away is a great idea. People often don't know what is good for them until someone makes them do it.
People who constantly need to be connected can show behavior very similar to ADHD. Moving from app to app, hunting stimulus and social acceptance. Dopamine, that reassurance in the back of your brain is the cause.
I have ADHD. A pretty heavy amount at that. I have trained myself not to get on Facebook, twitter, or even use my phone to often. Luckily enough this last week I had hours of homework and group work. Between co-writing a project paper in COMM 486 and posting to Facebook for our commons campaign this wasn't hard.
The thing is that when finally finding times in the day were I can focus, I can't give those up. That is what made the media fast very hard. I usually spent time on my phone or laptop, doing research about things I'm interested or if an idea pops in my head I immediately look up something up. I did watch Netflix less, which I didn't watch it much before. Every now and again I would check emails for survey responses.
College and life today heavily relies on the use of computers, phones and other technology. For someone with ADHD this can be daunting if they haven't devised a system for not getting caught up in the vast distractions that live on the internet.
I have been doing a lot of research on ADD/ADHD and the things that in an average persons brain create the control ability of attention versus the latter. What facebook, snapchat, twitter and even tinder does to us is treat us like Pavlov's dog.
With every notification comes a sound and a vibration, then a little message and and added number in the notifications count. Every time you get another like or reaction, your brain is giving of little bursts of dopamine, which is our brains reward drug.
You release dopamine when listening to your favorite music, drinking whiskey and doing or accomplishing things that you associate as positive. With every notification or match on tinder, your brain is getting rewarded more and more and more. This is because you associate those responses with being important or wanted.
Lack of dopamine regulation and an overall deficiency is one of the major contributing factors to the lack of ability a person with ADD/ADHD has to control their sustained focus. To clear up, people afflicted with ADD/ADHD can focus for extended periods, but the time in which the can is random and not consistent.
Things like Facebook or any notification based social media can become very bad for people with ADD/ADHD. they can spend hours looking for ways in which to interact within these social realms, awaiting those little burst of reward that their under stimulated brains crave.
I participated very well this week in what the expectation of the assignment due to the schedule. Otherwise, following instruction that might potentially arrest any ability to focus on my schoolwork/job work or invade my personal relationships and motivations would have been not something I would have participated in.