To protect your safety during the coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis, we offer telephone and video conferences.
Please contact our office today to set up a remote consultation. For more information, read our blog post.
close

How Can We Help?

  1. Home
  2.  | 
  3. Car Accident Injuries
  4.  | Understanding brain chemistry can help avoid distracted driving

Understanding brain chemistry can help avoid distracted driving

You may be sitting in the office, at home watching TV or wandering through the produce section at the grocery story. Wherever you are, the moment you hear that familiar chime of your cell phone notifications, you’re probably instinctively reaching for your phone.

We’ve become addicted to our smartphones. We crave the constant connectivity to our texts, emails and social media. It’s a way we connect with our family and friends, which can make us feel special and appreciated.

What we may not realize, however, is that our smartphones have pulled a sort of Pavlovian trick on us. They have trained us to associate the ping of an incoming notification with a reward.

How your smartphone affects your brain

When you hear your cell phone alert go off, it creates a sense of anticipation. You begin to wonder whether there’s new activity on your Twitter feed. Maybe your old high school crush has accepted your Facebook friend request.

During this time, the reward center of your brain becomes engaged. The feel-good chemical dopamine is released in your body, putting your emotions in a heightened state of arousal. When this happens, it can force your prefrontal cortex—the area of your brain in charge of temporal processing and decision-making—to shut down.

This makes you more likely to engage in activities that make you feel good—and less likely to avoid activities that are unsafe.

Cell phone notifications while driving

We’ve talked in previous posts about Florida’s distracted driving laws. Cell phone use while driving has led to a surge in distracted driving accidents in recent years.

Understanding how your brain reflexively responds each time your cell phone pings provides insight into driver behavior. If you hear an alert while driving, there are chemical reasons that can make checking your phone difficult to resist.

To help limit your chances of a distracted driving accident, it’s best to remove the cell phone temptation altogether. Whenever you get behind the wheel, turn your phone off—or else set it to silent. You’ll be doing a great service to yourself—and to everyone else on the road.

Icon Testimonials Client Testimonials

I was injured at work directly due to poor management decisions. I worked as a lifeguard and a child that was in the care of the day care facility on the campus ran away. He was in immediate danger. I…
SHONA M.
I have recommended Jonathan Levy and his law firm to my friends and one of them became his client. I am truly grateful for everything Jonathan Levy and his team have done on my behalf. He is truly a wonderful attorney.
Faithe C.

Much to my surprise not only did they win my lawsuit but I ended up getting 3 times the original amount I was expecting to get! I could not have been more pleased with the staff and the outcome.
Allison M.

If it wasn’t for your help, I know I wouldn’t have been able to win my case. I know that it was far away for you to come to Miami but your professionalism was outstanding. I will always recommend you.
Maria W.

You might say you were even just doing your job, however, I think it’s essential that you realize how fortunate I am to have such a trusted esteemed attorney in my corner, blessed really.
Anonymous

See All Testimonials  

Video: Are Punitive Damages Available In A Florida Auto Accident Case?

Icon Case

CASE RESULTS

See All Case Results  
FindLaw Network