Negative Effects Of Phone Addiction
Chronic phone use is a recently developed form of addiction. The American Psychiatric Association does not officially recognize the condition. Still, it is acknowledged as a behavioral addiction by many medical professionals and researchers worldwide. According to several studies, over time, the devoted use of smartphones can alter and negatively impact an individual much like gambling.
Phone addiction may lead to:
- Psychological disorders
Chronic phone use can also cause other physical dysfunctions, like GABA dysfunction and a loss of grey matter in the brain, which are highly correlated to substance use disorders.
Recognizing The Symptoms Of Cell Phone And Internet Addiction
A 2016 report published in Frontiers in Psychiatry suggests using the DSM-5 criteria for compulsive gambling and substance abuse to measure problematic smartphone use. While problematic smartphone use is not defined as an addiction, it can be evaluated as a behavioral disorder.
Using this model, potential symptoms might include the following:
Conscious use in prohibited contexts or potentially dangerous situations
Excessive use that causes conflicts with family withdrawing from family or shared events in favor of smartphone use
Negative effects on school, family, social, or emotional functioning
Continued excessive use despite negative effects
Impulsive, frequent, constant checking of phone, even in short bursts
Insomnia or sleep disturbances related to frequent checking
Excessive urgency or need to be connected
Increase in use to achieve satisfaction or counteract dysphoric mood
Need to respond immediately to messages and alerts
Increased anxiety and/or irritability if phone is not accessible
Feelings of unease when unable to use the phone
It can be difficult to distinguish between normal daily use and problematic use. It helps to ask yourself the following questions:
Prevalence Of Smartphone Addiction
The prevalence of smartphone addiction among USM medical students was 40.6% hypothesis 1 assumes the prevalence of smartphone addiction among USM medical students is more than 40%. This study reported that there is a higher prevalence of smartphone addiction among male medical students compared to female medical students, which is similar to a few other studies . Other studies found a higher prevalence of smartphone addiction in females compared to males . Interestingly, previous studies did not report that gender is associated with smartphone addiction. The high prevalence of smartphone addiction in this study may be explained by smartphones becoming the main communication device among Malaysians and elsewhere. The percentage of smartphone consumers gradually rose from 68.7% in 2016 to 75.9% in 2017 . Another observation is that medical students are using smartphones for social media messaging services such as WhatsApp and WeChat for communication purposes as well as for their studies, hence smartphones are becoming a vital tool in personal and professional life . A study reported that WhatsApp assisted in easy learning and provided a way for clear communication of knowledge in shorter periods . The higher prevalence of smartphone addiction in male medical students may be due to male medical students using their smartphone more for their entertainment such as online games while females use their smartphones for social interactions .
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Dont Let Phone Addiction Win
Though smartphones are an excellent resource, they also can be potentially dangerous tools, especially for children and young adults. The extent of issues that arise from excessive phone use is still not completely understood. However, as science continues to link health problems to cell phone use, it is essential to be proactive.
If you are worried about yourself or a loved one, there are steps you can take. Do not let a phone consume anyones life. Take an empowered step towards recovery, possibly by delineating a short timeframe in which to complete an all-out phone detox. If thats not feasible for you or for the one with the problem, then bring as much awareness to the issue as you can sometimes, being conscious of our issues and tracking our behavior as best we can is all we can do.
To make that first step toward recovery, get matched with a therapist today.
Overcome Phone Addiction
Reviewed by Doctor of Addiction Medicine: September 19, 2022
Dr. Ashish Bhatt, MD
Addiction Centers Medical Content Director, Dr. Ashish Bhatt, MD, MRO is an accomplished physician, addiction medicine specialist, and psychiatrist with over 20 years of medical and administrative leadership.
- More from Dr. Ashish Bhatt
Using Your Cell Phone Wisely
A cell phone is virtually indispensable in many areas of your life hence theyre difficult to avoid. However, following a few simple tips will help you use your cell phone wisely.
- Activate airplane mode if you want to set the mobile alarm clock.
- Delete applications that you never use.
- Disable app notifications with expendable information from the home screen. You can always consult them when you have some free time.
- Dont use your cell phone first thing in the morning. This behavior can too easily become automatic. Instead, head straight for the shower and get ready for your day as soon as you get up.
- Set an exact time for a call and avoid waiting an entire afternoon for it.
- During work hours, use the email facility on your computer.
- Assume that, if theres something really urgent, youll be able to be located without a problem. Therefore, its not necessary to look at your cell phone so often.
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Consider Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
This therapeutic approach helps illuminate the links between your thoughts, behaviors, and emotions. It can be a very effective type of therapy to help you change certain behavior patterns.
At least one small study suggests that CBT may be effective in balancing changes in brain chemistry associated with cell phone addiction.
If you think this type of therapy may help you, talk with your primary care doctor about where or how you can find a therapist.
How To Help Teens Overcome A Smartphone Addiction
Believe it or not, smartphone use can be beneficial for teens. Teens use smartphones to , seek help on school assignments, and they can even use apps to help them get organized. Although it might seem like teens are constantly connected, many use their devices within healthy limits.
Its important to empower teens to take control of their own use of smartphones and create and maintain a healthy balance. This isnt a one-time conversation. A few things you can do help provide guidance and support include the following:
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Delete Apps Switch Off Your Phone Or Limit Your Notifications
Delete apps if there is something particular that triggers usage. You could also keep your phone away. You could turn off notifications if deleting is too much. If this makes you very uncomfortable, your phone use most likely indicates shortcomings in your social and personal life. Your physical and psychological needs could be unsatisfied and you may feel powerless in social situations. But those situations are required to fulfill your social needs. So start slow and keep a purpose for your phone use. Spend your energy to satisfy your needs in the material world.
People Are No More Addicted To Smartphones Than Alcoholics Addicted To Bottles
Posted March 4, 2019
Last year I did a lot of back-to-back BBC radio interviews concerning my thoughts on a new study on smartphone use carried out by Opinium Research for Virgin Mobile and reported in a number of papers including the Daily Mail.The company surveyed 2,004 British adults who own a smartphone as well 200 British young people aged between 10 and 17 years. The main findings were that:
- British adults receive an average of 33,800 mobile phone messages and alerts annually
- British adults spend the equivalent of 22 days a year checking messages on their smartphones
- An average smartphone user gets 93 buzzes a day
- Those aged between 18 and 24 years have almost three times more messages receiving 239 messages and alerts a day on average .
- On average, Britons are members of six chat groups, although a small minority are members of 50 groups or more, rising to 7% among those aged 18 to 24 years.
- One in four adults say they check a WhatsApp message instantly, with this increasing to almost one in three among 18 to 24-year-olds.
- Smartphone users receive 427% more messages and notifications than they did a decade ago
- Smartphone users sent 278% more messages than they did a decade ago
The survey found a contributing factor behind the surge in the number of messages received was the rise of group chats on platforms like WhatsApp and . In the press release, Dr Dimitrios Tsivrikos said:
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Categorize Your Phone Activities And Assign A Time Per Activity
Break down your smartphone activity into categories and dedicate 2-5 minutes to each category. Do this at least 1+ hour after waking up and 1+ hour before sleeping. This will help you disconnect the phone behavior from sleep onset and waking. In between, you can do a filler activity that is gratifying . Ignore all pointless activities and just do the top 2 activities. For example, if you want to check Instagram updates for a particular profile, do that. Ignore the scrolling. If you want to Snapchat with someone, just do that. Leave aside reposting those snaps on IG.
Mobile Phone Addiction Is Causing Mental Health Problems
It is important to note that there has also been a rise in depression and suicide among teenagers in recent years, alongside phone addiction. Adolescent girls are particularly susceptible to the risk. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, between 2010-2015, the suicide rate rose by 65%. At the same time, the rate of severe depression among girls increased by 58%. Many researchers believe the rise in suicides is a direct reflection of the negative effects of phone addiction.
The major question is how do we get to know we are addicted to our cell phones? When a person uses his/her cell phone most of the time, unable to cut back on cell phone usage, using cell phones as a solution to boredom, feeling anxiety or depression when your phone is out of your range, losing your relationships. Research says when cell phone use becomes an addiction, the behavior becomes stressful. Salvatore Insignia, a neurosurgeon at Northwell Healths Neuroscience Institute in Manhasset, New York, considered that nonetheless that there is no solid proof between cell phone radiation and tumor risk but the possibility still exists. Adolescents are at high risk of being smartphone addicts.
Humans are, by nature, prone to distraction. With smartphones, we literally have a world of distractions at our fingertips. Its time to acknowledge that our devices can negatively impact our lives and we have to make a change.
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Manage Your Need For Distractions And Stimulation
You might have a need for passive sensory stimulation. The colors, fonts, interactions, etc., all add stimulation and the brain expects it after a while. You can reduce phone stimulation through other tricks like using minimalistic themes, black and white icons, reducing notifications, etc. You could then give your brain a better, richer replacement like learning a new skill, socializing, healthy gaming, sports, dating, grooming, cooking, reading, etc. If you must use your phone and need that additional distraction, change the type of phone activity. Perhaps a background game of chess or sudoku can provide that stimulation. Even journaling can help . Thatll ensure you get your stimulation/distraction and it doesnt become a counterproductive habit.
Smartphone Addiction: Definition Diagnosis And Adverse Effects
Smartphones can be problematic when used excessively. For example, excessive smartphone use can cause maladaptive behavioral difficulties seen in impulse control disorders in general or pathological gambling it can interfere with school or work , decrease real-life social interaction, decrease academic ability, cause relationship problems , and cause physical health-related problems including blurred vision and pain in the wrists or the back of the neck .
To define a new target of addiction, it is said that there is no definition according to the Fifth Edition of Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders which differ between behavioral and drug addiction. Only online gambling has been classified in DSM-5. And activities such as video games, exercise, food, shopping, work, and the Internet in general and particularly gambling are classified as behavioral addiction. Since smartphone excessive use and internet addiction have overlaps with each other, De-Sola Gutierrez, et al. proposed similar features in these two kinds of addictions .
Lin, et al. defined a list of diagnostic criteria for smartphone addiction which classified in 3 categories:
Category : consisted of the symptoms of smartphone addiction including:
1.Persistent use of smartphone with lack of control.
2.Restlessness, nervousness, or irritability after a period of withdrawal from use.
3.Using the smartphone for a period longer than anticipated.
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How To Break The Addiction
Breaking any type of addiction isnt easy, but it is possible.
First, you must acknowledge the issues it’s causing in your life. Once you have determined that you need to break your addiction, you can:
- Identify the reasons:Research has found that people who are on their phones constantly may be trying to escape issues or problems in their life. By determining if the root cause of your phone addiction is to escape problems, you can address and treat the underlying issues.
- Consider therapy: Certain types of therapy, such as cognitive behavioral therapy , have proven effective in helping people overcome addictions. Other types of effective therapies for addictions are contingency management, motivational interviewing, and couples counseling .
Behavioral Addiction Versus Substance Addiction
Behavior science experts believe that any source which is capable of stimulating an individual could become addictive. Previously defined, problematic use could be included in the behavior addiction category when the following components are taken into consideration: 1) The individual is preoccupied with a specific behavior 2) The behavior is used in order to escape reality or create a feeling of euphoria 3) As the behavior is continued, tolerance develops 4) When the behavior is abstained or interfered with, withdrawal symptoms occur and seclusion 5) As a consequence of the continuous behavior, interpersonal problems occur and 6) Individual experiences relapse against one’s will . Emotional complaints, conflicts in group affairs, college complications including learning problem and deficiency of concentration on doing assignment, professional or interactive complications, seclusion and inattention of contacts and interpersonal or personal duties, and psychological or physical agitation. In cases when the individual does not continue a particular manner, extreme exhaustion, daily life fluctuations, considerably condensed somatic motion, lack and fluctuations in sleep arrangements, intolerance, sexual deviances, viciousness, eating complaint and withdrawal signs .
A number of experts believe that behavioral addictions can be passive or active , and usually changing from habits into inducing and obligatory features which may contribute to the development of addiction .
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Tips For Preventing Cell Phone Addiction
When you set healthy boundaries between yourself and your cell phone, youre more likely to avoid smartphone addiction. Encourage your family to also obey these boundaries by setting cell phone usage limits for young children. Create rules in your household, such as a no phones at the dinner table mandate.
Intentionally unplugging from your phone for a few hours every day, such as when youre exercising or having a meal with your family, helps you reconnect to the world around you. To prevent cell phone addiction, you should also:
– Track your data usage and set limits for yourself and your family members.
– Remove the apps you find yourself spending the most time on, such as games or social media.
– Change your cell phone settings so you dont receive as many notifications.
– Engage in hobbies or activities that dont involve your cell phone, such as playing a musical instrument or painting.
Your smartphone is a lifeline that provides information on the spot and keeps you connected to loved ones. However, its important to pay attention to your cell phone usage to ensure you dont develop an addiction to your device. Maintain a healthy and happy mental state by balancing your engagement in the real world along with your screen time.
Smartphone Addiction Statistics For 2022
Since the world saw the first iPhone in 2007, smartphone usage has steadily become an accepted part of our daily lives and the smartphone addiction statistics prove it. Now, in 2022, we are glued to our phones. Because we rely on our phones for communication and connection, it can be hard to gauge when excessive smartphone use becomes an addiction. Smartphone addiction can result in sleep deprivation, increased stress levels, depression and anxiety. While being addicted to your digital devices doesnt negatively impact your health as seriously as other types of addiction, it does indeed impact not only your mental health but your physical wellbeing.
Even though were a mass texting service and feel that text marketing brings great things to both businesses and consumers, these smartphone addiction statistics prove you shouldnt have your phone with you all the time. Do you have a phone addiction? Does someone you know Here are all the cell phone addiction statistics you need in order to learn more about this issue.
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Try These Other Practical Steps
- Remove time-consuming apps from your phone and access them through a device you dont carry with you all day.
- Change your settings to eliminate push notifications and other disruptive alerts.
- Set your screen to gray scale to keep it from waking you at night.
- Place some barriers around your phone use that force you to think about what youre doing. For example, you could create lock screen questions, like Why now? and What for?
- Keep your phone out of sight. Charge your phone somewhere besides your bedroom.
- Develop hobbies that feed your soul. Replace the games and social media apps with hands-on, real-world activities, like meeting up with friends, creating music or art, or doing volunteer work.
- Adopt a growth mindset. Brief relapses, adjustments, and withdrawal symptoms are part of a journey toward healthier phone use. Dont expect to get it right immediately. Expect some setbacks, and learn from each experience.