Technology is great. The advancements made on chip technology and connectivity, both wired and wireless, now enables us to have the world at our fingertips. It’s hard to believe that the average computing power of a smartphone is similar to a bulky desktop a decade ago. Advancements on screens enable us to watch full films on our mobiles. Also, with connections getting faster, including Wi-Fi and cellular, streaming rich content is as easy as pie. In addition to this, the cost of staying connected and be always-on has come down tremendously. Soon, we will be always-on without breaking the bank, battery life permitted.
In terms of entertainment value, it’s hard to deny that technological advancement has not improved things. We can consume any type of content for our pleasure at any time, without going through too much effort. What about other aspects of life though, such as health? How has technology changed the way we live our lives in a better and healthier way?
Here are a few examples of just that.
We simply have more information available to us. Sure, the internet does require a healthy dose of critical skepticism, but once you can filter out the bad from the good, it’s a treasure trove of information. Ranging from dietary advice, an encyclopedia of health issues, helpful forums, and videos on exercising routines and motivational stuff, the internet will have a source of information for you so you can be better informed. It’s also simple stuff that is more in the spur of a moment, such as finding those last instructions your doctor gave you to increase odds for a successful surgery. Were you supposed not to eat 24 hours in advance and drink loads of fluids, or was it the other way around?
Technology has also given us wearable devices. Commercial adaptation of this can be found in the fitness world. Think of wearable heart rate monitors and distance counters. If you are a professional athlete or keen amateur you are most likely familiar with the bands you can wear around your chest. Also, most sports watches can monitor your pulse on your wrist. Being aware of your heart rate during intense activity and at rest is a great way to assess how fit you are. Using distance counters (now usually embedded in sports watches) is a great way to track your run/cycle journey, compare it to previous sessions and plan workout plans following that. Platforms such as Strava, Runkeeper, and Runtastic also enable you to share your run on social media, helping you to motivate yourself with extrinsic factors.
More directly related to health, we see that technology is powering more fundamental changes. Such as devices that keep track of blood sugar levels continuously for people with diabetes. Or ways to connect to a healthcare professional without having to travel. You can be assessed remotely and be given advice or a direct physical referral straight away. We see that 3d printing is revolutionizing prosthetic’s and is even affecting organ transfers. VR/AR, headsets and robot-assisted surgery are pointing to a new world where invasive surgery might be a thing of the past.
All in all, technology is making significant headway. As we are enjoying our entertainment, be assured that new tech is changing healthcare as we know it.