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Finally, someone declares that cell phones are an addiction


Finally, it seems, someone has declared that cell phones and other electronic devices are an actual addiction. According to a new study report issued by Common Sense Media, more than half of the teens they talked with actually admitted they were addicted to their cell phones. Many others, perhaps, are and just don’t really realize it.

Nearly 60% of the teens told researchers that they just are unable to put their phones down for even the briefest of seconds. In addition, nearly 30% of their parents admitted that they were similarly addicted to their cell phones.

“Digital devices had transformed people’s lives,” said the CEO of Common Sense Media, James Steyer. “It has public health concerns.”

In the study, nearly half of the parents felt they need to answer a text and an email within the hour while over 70% of teens felt that compulsion. For parents, almost 70% said they check their phones at least once an hour while 80% of the teens said they checked every hour at least once.

What all this has done, it seems, is increase multi tasking that no one is really able to handle. Many studies have found that multi tasking is harmful and that work done under such conditions is inferior to say the least. Most teens in the study said that they talk on the phone or text at the same time that they are watching television and doing their homework.

About 80% of the teens said the cell phone addiction is harmful to their relationships as they feel no one is paying any attention or listening to others if they have a phone in their hand. What is on the phone is more important than where they actually are, who they are with, and what they are doing. This can all be safely said for any addiction. The addiction is always the priority.

Using mobile devices while driving is so commonplace that statistics are hardly required to validate it. There were 1,200 teens and parents involved in the study. One conclusion is that people who are addicted have little, if any social or people skills, and find it difficult to engender empathy. Teens spend about nine hours a day with their cell phones and other electronic devices. Many, as much as half, admitted that they do, indeed, spend too much time on them but feel they have no real control over it.

PHOTO SOURCE: Benjamin Child /