Do you leave your home with your phone and have it with you at all times?
Do you refuse to read and follow written instructions and demand to “speak to a human being” when dealing with businesses online?
Do you sleep with your phone?
Do you ever turn your phone off?
Addiction in a Mobile World
Research reveals less than half of smartphone users actually use their handsets for calling. The more users view their phone’s menu screens, news, e-mail and apps throughout the day the more addicted they become. Apps that offer “informational rewards” only feed smartphone addiction, so looking at a Facebook status with real-time updates about location, for example, contributes to the cycle.
The brain’s dopamine system allows humans to experience pleasure and reward, but people who are addicted to the Internet have fewer, or impaired, dopamine receptors, making it difficult to feel rewards without extra effort.
Nomophobia is the word first coined by British researchers in 2008 for the fear of being out of mobile phone contact. The first study into nomophobia in the UK revealed that 53% of mobile users suffered from the condition. The 2012 study British cellphone technology company SecurEnvoy reveals 66% of the mobile users suffer from Nomophobia.
Symptoms of Nomophobia
- Panic and anxiety when separated from the phone
- Having multiple phones
- Compulsive checking of phone for messages, battery life
- Using phone in inappropriate places
- Phone activity becoming an issue in relationships, work or school
- (18 – 24) age group was most nomophobic at 77%,
- 25 – 34 age group second most nomophobic at 68%
- 55 and older age group was third most nomophobic at 36%
Causes of Nomophobia
- lack of self control
- dopamine craving
Does Forgetting Your Phone At Home Make You Antsy? Associate professor of psychology James Hamilton recently explained:
“Cellphones are negatively reinforcing because they provide an easy and immediate relief from feelings of anxiety, social exclusion or boredom … This is the great danger of cellphone dependency – the general erosion of our ability to wait, postpone gratification, deal directly with our fears and tolerate being bored or alone with ourselves.”
Internet Use Disorder
In May 2013, the newest version of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) will be released. For the first time, this manual will include Internet Use Disorder, which is described as a preoccupation with Internet gaming and withdrawal symptoms when the Internet is taken away. Twitter, Facebook, Smartphones and Other Drugs
The Digital Diet
The Digital Diet: The 4-Step Plan to Break Your Tech Addiction and Regain Balance in Your Life by Daniel Sieberg is a 4 step – 28-day plan. Sieberg, a contributor to ABC, BBC and MSNBC, describes himself as a recovering addict of online gaming (World of Warcraft), social networks (Facebook, Twitter), “CrackBerry” (BlackBerry), iPhone, and so many more distracting endeavors.
Overcoming Digital Overwhelm
Our digital challenge can make us feel frustrated, guilty, and angry at ourselves. But there’s another way to look at the test. It’s an excellent opportunity to get to know and master the habits of your mind. And that’s how you can find freedom in the digital realm and every other arena of your life too. A Step-by-Step Guide to Overcoming Digital Overwhelm
Digital Detox Holidays
According to the WTM Global Trends Report 2012 more hotels are offering ‘digital detox’ holidays to help stressed consumers to relax and unwind, without texts and emails. WTM news: is no-tech the new hi-tech?
Related post: Blogging and Cell Phone Addiction