What are all the disadvantages of using a computer?

Updated: 12/29/2017 by Computer Hope

Although there are a lot of advantages to using a computer, there are also many disadvantages to using a computer (like most things in life). Below is a list of many of the disadvantages to using a computer and what type of problems you may personally encounter while using a computer.

Carpal tunnel and eye strain

Carpal Tunnel wrist brace

A computer requires a lot of repetitive movement that can lead to carpal tunnel syndrome. For example, moving your hand from your keyboard to a mouse and typing are all repetitive and can cause injuries. Taking breaks, keeping the proper posture, and understanding computer ergonomics can all help prevent or delay these injuries.

Too much sitting

Too much of anything is bad and too much sitting for a long time and becoming a mouse potato can lead to health problems. Substituting a traditional desk for a standing desk is not a perfect solution, as scientists have found that standing for long periods of time is not healthy, but can be better than sitting. The best solution is to take frequent breaks where you move around, stretch, and exercise.

Short attention span and too much multitasking

With today's computers, computer devices, and the Internet we have all become hooked on instant gratification. As you use a computer and the Internet and get immediate answers to your questions and requests, you become accustomed to getting that quick dopamine fix. You can become easily frustrated when something doesn't work or is not answered in a timely matter.

With a reduced attention span, it is also not uncommon to multitask more and work on more than one thing at the same time. Many studies show that multitasking is less productive, can cause more mistakes, and may even be bad for your brain.

Can limit learning and create a dependency

If you can remain focused, a computer with the Internet can be one of the greatest tools in history to learn about anything. It's also easy to become overly reliant on a computer and other electronic devices. For example, a spell checker is a great tool for finding spelling errors. However, if you never learn the proper spelling of a word and rely on spell checker or auto-correct, you're more likely to make spelling errors.

Other tools like grammar checkers, GPS, and calculators are also extremely helpful. However, if you become too reliant on these tools, you may be helpless when they're not available.

Potential of loss of privacy


With computers storing so much of your personal information and now being connected to the Internet you risk the potential of that information getting into the hands of others. Once a malicious person has your personal information, they could access your online accounts or use identity theft to open other accounts, such as a new credit card under your name.

Time sink and lots of distractions

Although a computer can be a tool that can significantly increase your productivity, it can also be something that can be used to waste a lot of your time. For example, you could be trying to learn more about computers and see an interesting link on cooking spaghetti, spending a few minutes reading that page. Then, you read a page about the best pot to use, which leads to reading about healthy eating. Two hours later, you realize you never achieved your original goal.

Also, with the popularity of social networks and notifications, you can become easily distracted while you are trying to work.

Increases waste and impacts the environment


With the speed that computers and other electronics get replaced, all of the old devices that get thrown away have a significant impact on the environment.

Can reduce jobs

As computers become smarter and more capable, they also replace the need for many jobs. In the future, it is also not inconceivable that computers will be able to carry out any job.

Trolls, abuse, stalking, and exploitation


Anyone who has spent time on the Internet has encountered trolls or abusive people. Unfortunately, with the anonymous nature of the Internet and being connected to all types of individuals from around the world, it is much easier to encounter these kinds of people.

With more and more people sharing information on the Internet, it is also much easier for stalkers to find personal information about people and their family. They can also use online services to find information about people.

Finally, the Internet also makes it much easier for those who prey on others to find people to exploit.

You could become anti-social or depressed

With all of the possibilities available on a computer, it is easy to get obsessed to the point you become anti-social. For example, many online games (e.g., World of Warcraft) have been designed to be addictive and can easily consume so much time that you end up playing the game more than being around others. Others may find online shopping so beneficial that they rarely go out to shop.

For many, social networks can also be an escape of being social in the real world by doing most of your association with friends and family over social networks like Facebook. There have also been many studies that shows social network sites can be depressing because they only show all of the good, fun, and interesting things friends and family are doing. It can result in people believing that other people's lives are so much better than theirs.