During the lockdown, you may binge-watch. Here’s how you can avoid side effects

psychology of watching TV

Since most of you in Nepal are in another round of lockdown again, it is a great time to finish the movies or series that you have always wanted to watch. The streaming era has changed the way you watch these series. There is no need to wait for weeks to watch your favourite shows as you can find all the episodes online.

Hence, binge-watching has become common these days as people have easy access to the movies and series of their desire.

However, binge-watching can affect your health in many ways. It can affect you physically and mentally. Today, we are going to point out some probable problems that can be caused by binge-watching and then, how you can avoid them.

Side effects

1. Physical inactivity


Binge-watching leads to a sedentary lifestyle which can lead to poor health outcomes. Lack of physical activity affects your behaviour and performance. This can further increase the risk of obesity and related conditions such as diabetes and heart disease. It can also increase the risk of depression and may even trigger your anxiety.

2. Sleep problems

Photo: starmedicalassociates

Sleep is important to maintain quality physical and mental health. Sleep helps in the proper functioning of the brain as well as proper maintenance of the body. Binge-watching can cause sleep deficiency which can further lead to serious mental and physical health problems, loss of productivity and other injuries. Binge-watching can cause poorer sleep quality and increase fatigue and insomnia. The more you do this, the harder it will be for your brain to naturally shut itself down and as a result, it will take longer for you to fall asleep.

3. Unhealthy diet

Photo: BYU

Binge-watching can lead to a habit of consuming unhealthy and untimely diets. This can create an imbalanced calories in-calories out ratio.

While watching, people often tend to eat food that is not the healthiest such as junk foods, sugary beverages and even alcoholic drinks regardless of their hunger level. This habitual consumption of food and lack of physical activity can eventually cause weight gain and may increase the risk of getting high blood pressure and diabetes.

4. Isolation

Photo: Dailyhunt

People who binge often do it by themselves and the more they do the more they isolate themselves and cut off from their social life. Binge-watching can affect your mental, physical as well as social life. It can also affect your work responsibilities and personal relationships. Moreover, it can isolate you from the rest of your social circle and repeating this behaviour can cause a serious problem for you in adopting your social life later.

5. Heart disease and back problems

Photo: healthgrades

Sitting passively for a long period can affect your heart and cause you several heart-related problems. Binge-watching can develop a blood clot in the leg that can be fatal if it breaks and travels to the heart or lungs. It can also create back problems and improper posture as people often forget the right posture and sit on the couch and bed that gives strain to the back, shoulders and hips. It is not a problem in the initial days, but you feel discomfort if you continue it for a longer duration.

6. Addiction

Photo: Indianfolk

Binge-watching can be an addiction like any other addiction. It can create excitement in you about what will happen next and will make you more engaged in the content. Since you have easy access, you can watch as much as you can. This can give a sense of relief from all the stress and problems.

One can easily get oneself engaged in binge-watching just to overcome the stress one is facing. Doing it repeatedly can cause addiction and can affect your normal day to day life. It can lead to difficulty in socialising and you may feel comfort in isolation. In the long run, it can even shorten your life span.


So, should you stop binge-watching then?

No, there is no need to stop binge-watching as long as you are the one to control things and not the other way around. If you are already addicted or are about to start this habit make sure you do the following:

1. Limit yourself

Photo: Medium

Whenever you start a new show, make sure you only watch a smaller number of episodes at a time. Once you have completed the number you have set, turn off your device and indulge yourself in other activities. Make plans to do something after watching the show.

2. Set a time limit

Photo: Youtube

Instead of just watching whenever you feel like, set a proper time. Deciding a proper and appropriate amount of time makes a proper habit. You can set a timer or even an alarm to keep yourself on track.

3. Make it social

Photo: medicalnewstoday

You can always invite your siblings or family members to watch the shows with you. It is more likely that you do not spend as much as time you would have when watched alone by yourself. You can also discuss the characters and the plots with your friends.

4. Set a bedtime routine

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Do not sacrifice your sleep for binge-watching. Set a proper bedtime routine and do not be flexible about it only for binge-watching. Proper sleep is always important for the better functioning of your body.

5. Snack healthy

Photo: Verywell fit

Instead of always eating unhealthy snacks during the watch, opt for a healthier option. Eat food that has more nutritional values like fruits and vegetables. Make sure you drink plenty of water instead of sugary beverages.

6. Set a proper routine

Photo: The Spruce

It is always important to find the right balance. You should always try to balance your watch with physical exercise, reading, socialising or a hobby. Setting a proper routine can help you find the right balance.

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Subba was a tech and auto writer at Onlinekhabar until December 2022.

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