From dark spots to acne: How mobile phone addiction can hamper your skin health

New age studies on mobile use and skin health do not eliminate the link between the two. (Source: Getty Images/Thinkstock)

When was the last time you cleaned your smartphone? Chances are that you don’t even remember. You might want to fix this habit considering you use your mobile phone constantly. Since mobile phones are said to carry 10 times more bacteria than a public toilet seat, whenever you put your phone up to your ear for a call, bacteria along with sweat and oil come into contact with the skin leading to breakouts in some cases.

Also, new age studies on mobile use and skin health have claimed that the blue light of a phone can cause various skin issues, including premature ageing.

Here are five possible skin problems that you need to pay attention to, as suggested by Divya Mehta, co-founder, Epique Labs.

Mobile-phone-Dermatitis

Dermatitis is the inflammation of the skin. Recent studies have shown that holding a mobile phone close to the skin can cause swelling, redness, itching or blistering near the cheekbones, ears, jaw or hands, commonly termed as mobile phone dermatitis. Metals such as nickel and chromium are responsible for this. These are widely present in almost all mobile phone casings.

The solution: Use hands-free devices like headsets or bluetooth or put your phone on speaker mode whenever you can, to avoid direct contact with the skin.

Premature wrinkles

Experts recommend that you hold your phone at eye level and increase font-size to avoid crow’s feet. (Source: File Photo)

Today, age is not the only factor that is responsible for the occurrence of wrinkles. In fact, people in their 20s have started complaining of crow s feet around the eyes. Constantly staring at the small screen and squinting to read the small font can lead to wrinkles around the tech-neck area or the area underneath the chin and vertical furrows between the brows.

The solution: Experts recommend that you hold your phone at eye level and increase font-size to avoid these skin problems. Also use eye creams with a cooling applicator to help relax the eyes, and skin firming creams to boost elasticity and the production of collagen.

Phone-induced pigmentation and acne

Mobile phones tend to get warm after prolonged use. When these devices get warm they tend to interrupt the normal melanin production of your skin, causing dark-spots and uneven tones in the long run. Also, since phones are not germ-free, germs transfer onto your face to enable acne outbreaks.

The solution: Try and limit the length of calls. If that is not possible, remember to keep alternating your ears when speaking on the phone. This will help reduce the occurrence of dark spots. Also, clean your phone daily with an anti-bacterial wipe and remember to maintain hygiene before exchanging phones with others as well.

Night time routines and dark circles

Part of our night ritual has become to check out the latest FB posts or what the Twitterati are up to. But when our eyes look at a bright screen in a dark room for too long, our brain has a harder time relaxing and getting into sleep mode. The time the body needs to wind down and relax itself gets taken up with more stimulation. This results in loss of good sleep.

The solution: As a best practice, avoid your mobile phone after dinner. Instead of logging onto social media, take an hour to just relax and wind down.

Dull skin

The blue LEDs emitted by the phone not only release non-ionising radiation but also disrupt your body s natural sleep cycle. (Source: File Photo)

You already know that blue light before bedtime is bad for health. The problem is that the blue LEDs emitted by the phone not only release non-ionising radiation but also disrupt your body s natural sleep cycle. Besides other health issues, not getting enough sleep can lead to poor water balance, which may result in dull skin as well as more visible wrinkles.

The solution: A good sleep is important for overall health, including your skin health.