Health and Wellbeing
This domain concerns one’s awareness of the issues and the opportunities that can affect his/her wellness in a digitally rich world. Digital citizens inhabit both virtual and real spaces. For this reason, the basic skills of digital competence are not sufficient. Individuals also require a set of attitudes, skills, values and knowledge that render them more aware of issues of health and wellbeing.
In this sense, health and wellbeing in a digital-extended world means being aware of the issues and opportunities that can affect the sphere of wellness: fighting against internet addiction, keeping the right ergonomic posture, being informed about the risks of constantly using mobile devices are only few examples.
Health and Wellbeing focuses on the balanced and appropriate use of technology by citizens in their everyday life and in their interactions with the online and offline communities. It covers issues ranging from ergonomics and the impact of excessive use of technology on a person’s life to communication aspects related to misuse which are currently having a nefarious effect on whole sectors of society e.g. through Cyberbullying and radicalisation.
The internet is also a source of health-related information which, whilst offering valuable guidance on nutrition, vaccinations and health alerts, for example, can also be the source of overfeed or false information that can influence young users towards increasing prevalent ‘real world’ trends such as eating disorders and self-harm. Teachers are already pointing out that when very young children spend too much time on technology, they often skip important developmental phases that will impact on their wellbeing for the rest of their life. Technology has intricately woven itself into almost every strand of our daily life, making it essential for citizens to integrate the digital domain of health and wellbeing as a top priority for themselves and for everyone in both their online and offline community.