Health

Reminder: Put Down Your Phone

October 1st 2015

By:
Nicole Charky

Cellphone habits are hard to break. Right?

According to one meme from The Idealist, there's more to our mobile addiction, and an important message that's often forgotten.

cellphone meme

Often, it feels natural to snap a quick Insta pic. We might be device-obsessed or just distracted, but we continually decide whether to capture a moment through a screen or filter. As a result, we often miss out on fun and "phub" our partners for screen time, as a recent Baylor University Study recently explained, or even develop psychological and physiological effects. One of those effects is nomophobia.

Nomophobia

A 2008 UK Post Office study coined the term "nomophobia" after finding that 53 percent of people surveyed admitted to experiencing feelings of anxiety after running out of phone battery or credit, losing their phone, or having no network coverage. More recently, a University of Missouri study found that phone separation caused study participants "serious psychological and physiological effects, including poor performance on cognitive tests." Russell Clayton, lead author of the University of Missouri study, said that the findings explained the psychological effect of an over-reliance on cellphones.

"[i]Phones are capable of becoming an extension of our selves such that when separated, we experience a lessening of 'self' and a negative physiological state," Clayton said.

RELATED: When Is It Acceptable To Check Your Cell Phone?

Our cellphone health

Each time you lower your head to send a text message, it is the equivalent of strapping a 60-pound weight to your neck, according to research published by Dr. Kenneth Hansraj, who measured the effect on your neck when its titled forward at various angles.

“It is an epidemic or, at least, it’s very common,” Hansraj told the Washington Post. “Just look around you, everyone has their heads down.”

People spend an average of two to four hours daily hunched over their phones, which means their spines have this stress for 700 to 1,400 hours per year. According to the study, a typical high school student could spend an additional 5,000 hours wearing down his or her spine.

That probably won't stop you from checking out Snapchat or Instagram, but recent research says that the blue light emitted from your screens is destroying your eyes and ruining your internal body chemistry by suppressing the production of melatonin. Lower melatonin levels can lead to insomnia and can also lead to diabetes, lupus, and some types of cancer.

RELATED: The Reasons Why Your Cell Phone Is Slowly Killing You

h/t Facebook/The Idealist