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Authors

  1. Bjorklund, Pamela PhD, APRN, CNS-BC, PMHNP-BC

Abstract

This essay explores the impact of digital technology on brain development and other areas of human growth including the capacity for empathy, which is fundamental to successful relationships, is an essential survival skill, and is an important source of moral knowledge. Reflections on a teenaged daughter's immersion in technology, coupled with evidence for the mixed consequences of such, weave together the gossamer threads of disparate, sometimes conflicting information about the explosion of digital technology over the past few decades, the impossibility of multitasking, the mixed effects of digital technology on brain development, and what it all might mean for human development generally and the moral capacity for empathic response in particular. While the essence of the commentary is intentionally interdisciplinary and weaves together disparate threads of multidisciplinary knowledge, it has important implications for nursing-with its relational core, unique as well as shared bodies of moral and scientific knowledge, and interprofessional health care goals to maximize human growth and well-being across the life span in both health and illness.