We use our cell phones for just about everything but the same things that make our lives so convenient, are also ruining them.
Cell phones are constantly being improved, which in turn increases the likelihood of overuse and addiction.
Just this week, a New York teenage girl was struck and killed by a train after trying to retrieve a cellphone from the tracks.
Per the PEW Research Center, 67% of smartphone owners have admitted to checking their phone for calls or messages when their phone didn't vibrate or ring.
There is treatment groups and centers to help those addicted to technology.
Morningside Recovery specializes in diagnoses of nomophobia, which means the fear of being without your mobile device.
The organization has locations in Texas, California and Arizona.:
Camp Grounded consists of a digital detox catered towards adults.
Here are some signs you're addicted to your cell phone:
- A need to use the cell phone more and more often to achieve the same desired effect.
- Persistent failed attempts to use cell phone less often.
- Preoccupation with smartphone use.
- Turns to cell phone when experiencing unwanted feelings such as anxiety or depression.
- Has put a relationship or job at risk due to excessive cell phone use.
- Withdrawal, when cell phone or network is unreachable.
Psychologist Dr. Elyssa Barbash with Tampa Therapy treats people who are addicted to their phone.
"Reaching for your phone, even if you didn't hear it ring or vibrate, just to see if someone called or texted. It's a good indication that it's something you might start addressing," says Dr. Barbash.
She's not alone, I found out many local psychologist are treating people with this addiction.
Dr. Barbash explains people usually seek treatment for a different problem like a failing marriage and find out the root of the issue is the phone. So, how do you treat cell phone addiction?
- Sometimes people reach for their cell phone when they feel stressed or anxious. So, it's a good way to distract yourself from using your phone by doing deep breathing.
- It has been effective with treating compulsive addictions, which is what a cell phone addiction is and learning how to monitor your thoughts.
There is also ways to treat the addiction at home by using apps.
One called "Breakfree" tracks the amount of time you spend looking at your phone, and gives you a heads up when it might be time for a break.
Another called "Moment" is similar. Let's you set daily limits on yourself and be notified when you go over.