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Smart or Stupid?


Cell phone addiction, also known as smartphone addiction, is a nonclinical term used to describe problematic phone use, or excessive phone use that interferes with health or daily life. According to recent research, an estimated 10 to 20 percent of people report feeling addicted to their phones, and experiencing distress or impairment as a result.

  • compulsive phone use: when a person feels compelled to use their cell phone in excess

  • nomophobia: fear of going without your phone

  • textaphrenia: fear of being unable to receive or send texts

The existence of cell phone addiction is a topic that has been hotly debated by mental health and addiction experts. It is not currently recognised as a type of disorder or addiction. However, there are reports of compulsive cell phone use, particularly with smartphones. You might have a cell phone problem if you:

  • spend the majority of time on your phone (outside of work or academic use)

  • experience significant distress or impairment as a result of your phone use

  • have unsuccessfully tried to limit phone use

  • neglect friends, family, and other relationships due to phone use

  • frequently feel your phone alerting you when it’s not (i.e. phantom vibrations)

  • continue to use your phone in excess despite negative effects on health, work, academic performance, or relationships

  • feel unable to reduce or control phone use

There is help. Seeking support from a qualified and experienced counsellor or psychotherapist is a beginning. Check:

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