In Mary Shelley's book "Frankenstein," the doctor's monster was brought to life by high-voltage electric shocks that jump-started its organs and brainwaves.
According to a new study, these days all Dr. Frankenstein might need to get the monster going would be a smartphone.
Recent epilepsy research from the Mayo Clinic used an electroencephalogram to measure participants' brainwaves and found that for about 20 percent of folks, "cortical processing in the contemporary brain is uniquely activated by the use of PEDs (personal electronic devices)," such as a cellphone or iPad.
That's right, for some people sending a text message changes the pattern of your brainwaves, creating what the scientists described as a "unique rhythm" that can't be replicated by tapping a finger or even by talking through the same device.
It takes extra effort and concentration to complete what the researchers called "nonauditory complex communication," such as texting. What that means is that it consumes all your conscious attention. For one in five, it alters brainwaves.
So now we have a scientific explanation of why texting while driving (or even walking across the street) is more dangerous than hands-free calling.
So heed the words on the digital sign that looms over the Holland Tunnel on your way from downtown Manhattan to New Jersey: "Pay Attention. Just Drive!"
Posts by Dr. Mehmet Oz, M.D. and Dr. Mike Roizen, M.D.
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