A self-imposed digital detox cleanse can boost your health and create more happiness in your life. Research shows the average adult spends about 4.5 hours a day watching TV and uses a digital device (smartphone, tablet, computer) almost 6 hours a day – terrible for your health and wellbeing.

However, new research suggests that turning off your digital devices temporarily can boost creativity and problem solving and have a positive impact on your health.

Consider the Digital Downside to Your Health
A recent study in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology found that too much screen time doubles the risk of being hospitalized or dying from heart disease (the leading cause of death in the United States), while a study in the International Journal of Obesity found that digital media consumption may be linked to obesity, sleep disorders, stress, and depression.

Sure, it’s convenient to sit your kids in front of the TV or device while you make dinner or run errands, but the American Academy of Pediatrics says more than two hours of screen time per day for kids increases the risk for weight gain, high blood pressure, diabetes, asthma, and even developmental delays.

How to Digitally Detox
A digital detox is somewhat like an intervention for an addiction. At first, the idea of turning off all digital devices for at least 24 hours may seem impossible, but it’s not. Check out this guide on how to unplug to rediscover life without 24/7 internet access.

To get started, keep track of how much screen time you get per day. Pay attention to how much screen time is essential, and how much screen time you spend on trivial things. With a better perspective on how you spend your time, you can plan your own digital detox day and do other things like:

  • Read a book
  • Visit with family and friends
  • Play with your kids
  • Exercise
  • Enjoy your favorite hobby
  • Go for a hike outdoors
  • Plan and prepare healthier meals
  • Take care of all the little things on your to-do list (written down on a piece of paper, of course).

Too much screen time may be getting in your way of being productive, thoughtful, creative, happier, and healthier. Plan a digital detox – maybe monthly – and you’ll be amazed at how you feel and what you can accomplish.