smartphone addiction among teenagers :A serious mental health issue

We used to talk about a lot of things, and very few times it was related to the study. We even made a special WhatsApp group for our close friends. We used to do some really interesting chats there. Many of the boys from that group started flirting with girls, and many tried flirting with me too. But soon as I got a boyfriend, they stopped with all the flirting. I guess this is some kind of bro code between them.

As there were many events like birthday parties and other parties, my android became a storage locker of many photos. Soon I didn’t realize that my phone was the biggest sucker of my time in Kota.

I spent half of my day talking with my boyfriend on the phone, and I spent the other half with him. I also like to watch movies, and I was able to download the film very quickly to my android; and because of this reason, I watched many of the Bollywood movies just in a month or a week.

I think the students in Kota come to study, but the technology handles easily distracting them. I really wish that I had realized it as soon as possible because this would have helped me in my preparation.

The other great convenience that these suckers yet beautiful things provide is food delivery, and due to this reason, we ordered the food most of the time from outside. When I used my phone, I used to look at the other students who used feature phones, and I still think about how those people used to spend their time. As for anyone living in Kota, it is really difficult to pass the free time without these androids and smartphones.

Whenever I used to study, I liked listening to the songs, and basically, those were the sweet romantic songs. I just need to plug the earphone, and then I can study peacefully. However, this peace doesn’t use to last long as my boyfriend used to call me most of the time. He had an unusual craving for meeting me and talking to me at odd times. Anyway, I still enjoyed all of it.

Now when I look back, I think the piece of advice that I really should have followed was that I should not have used an Android in Kota. This really used to distract and sucked all my time that I should have devoted to my studies. The androids really used to distract me as I had an active internet connection, and the most used apps on my phone were Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp.

The fun fact was I got the android phone from my parents as I said to them I have to solve the questions online. Now, if I recall, I can’t recall many instances where I would have used my phone to solve math, physics, or chemistry problems. Most of the time, I used my phone to chat, watch movies, or watch love web series.
Smartphone addiction is a real thing. When we’re talking, working, walking, and driving, we obsessively check our smartphones. Even though we know we shouldn’t but we just can’t help it. But you know what they say: recognizing you have a problem is the first step to fixing it, so congrats you have identified your problem, and you are on the way to resolve it.

Keep yourself on a schedule

The first and foremost suggestion for weaning yourself off your phone is literally setting alarms. You can start with every 15 minutes specifying how often you can check it. Move to every half hour, every 45 minutes, or every 1 hour. When your alarm beeps, spend one minute going through all notifications if any. And rest the alarm. Eventually, you will be used to it.

Turn off as many push notifications as possible

Of course, you don’t have to be interrupted by every “like” that your Facebook picture receives. The simplest way is to cut down as many distractions as possible. You can turn off push notifications for as many apps as you can. Personally, I prefer to get a notification on for emails, messages, and reminders.

Kick your device out of bed

Yes, you have to do it, because that blue light surely messes with your sleep hormones. Don’t let your phone be the last thing you see at night and the first thing you check in the morning. You have to make your bed a phone-free zone if you want to deal with this addiction. Personally, my first few nights were hard, but eventually, I am used to it.

Take distracting apps off your home screen

If you have to seek out an app to use it, you are more likely to cut down on the time-sucks that happen when you just start tapping around on your phone. You can move such apps on the second page.

Stay accountable

Want to judge your progress?

You can set a usage goal for yourself, and check how well you stick to it. Consider installing an app that tracks your smartphone activities. Personally, I prefer Xnspy as it sends me an analytical report based on the hours I have spent on each app. It helps in self-assessment.

Try turning on your phone’s grayscale

Yeah, it works. If you make your screen much less desirable to look at, you can cut the time spent on your smartphone. From your phone setting, find “Vision” and “Display accommodations” for Samsung and iPhone devices respectively to enable grayscale mode.

Since cutting down on your phone usage is one of your own resolutions, you can judge your progress all by yours Smartphone addiction is not made in one day.It first become a habit then it turns into addiction.Biologically addiction can understood as our body start releasing a hormone called Dopamine which makes us feel good by doing a particular thing.Similarly with continuous and uninterrupted use of smartphone make us feel good about that habit.

I will share my personal experience with you about how to get rid of smartphone addiction. I followed the “rule of 21” i.e. if you do something for 21 days ,then it become your habit.

First thing i did was,i switched to my conventional phone(old black and white Nokia) and get rid of broadband connection for one month and gave my tablet and smartphone to my father and told him keep in his safe as he was going out of station for 2 weeks and do dont give keys to Mom.

Next few days were very difficult for me,i was feeling like drug addict,whose cocaine stock was out.Sometime i use my mom’s phone, but her smartphone screen was small(4 inchs).It was very difficult for me to browse on her phone as i was using 5.5 inch display smartphone and 7.9 inch tab.As well as her phone hangs a lot.After 3 -4 days i stopped using her phone.

Magic start happening on 8 th day,i dont feel the urge of using smartphone, browsing social networking sites.I started spending more time in real world than virtual world.My study hours start increasing as i was out options where to spend my time.After 21 days i dont even remember that i have to collect my smartphone from my father.My father himself gave me my smartphone and tablet back after 1 month.

Now i feel that smartphone is just a means of communication instead of means of living.Now i barely use smartphone more than half an hour everyday.Most of the time i use my smartphone only to get some information from Google.At last i would say if a person like me with average willpower can get rid of this addiction, you can also get rid of it…..after all it is just a means of communication.
Getting out of smartphone addiction is not impossible but perceived tough for many, because we live in a culture that emphasizes having your cake and flaunting it before eating (or not eating) as an essential ingredient to our happiness, a culture that very wrongly presupposes that happiness is a constant state which could be achieved based on affirmations received from others, a culture that tells us it is a transgression to appear vulnerable and/or infallible, lest they raze down our carefully constructed images and the walls we build to protect and preserve those images, and a culture that emphasizes upgrading yourself on a continuous mode as key to a better life
A very common sight in Singapore MRT; people just do not talk to each other or do anything else other than look onto their phones.

Smartphone addiction is based on these premises—the need to have affirmations from others. This need simply snowballs on and on and before we’re ready to admit, we are all smartphones addicts. This had to happen. This is only but natural.
Smartphones give us one other medium to quickly form our self-concept and construct our identity. When posting a picture of the super-healthy and salivating salad we’re eating in our lunches, we’re addressing this need to form our identity—I’m a healthy person, who has healthy habits. Do you also think so? Yes, no, maybe? Tell me now!

When we are posting vacation pictures, yes, we want to show the world how beautiful a place is; how happy I was when vacationing; plus, my photography skills; and that I’m a happy person. You agree? Yes, No, Maybe?

Tied to this is also a chain of thought that could be represented as follows:

I’m a happy person, because I tell you so. I’m a happy person because I have achieved whatever I had thought I will achieve when I was 25. I have a nice and comfortable home, a good-looking and loving spouse, happy kids. I’m happy. I’ve achieved it. I have achieved my target, yet I don’t feel the surge of feeling happy all the time. What do I need to do now? Haven’t I done the thing I was required to do? Where’s my grade-card? I need affirmation from you—you my friend, you my colleague, you my mother, you my sibling—tell me I have a happy life and I’m a achiever. When you tell me something, I’ll believe it.

This is how our identities are formed. We think we are a loser when others tell us so. We subscribe to a commonly held definition of “loser”.

We think we are successful when we do things that others think to be indicative of success—having a good job with well-paying salary.

We think we are good writers when Quora assigns us Top Writer badges (We might be thinking we are good writers anyway, but Quora doing so is a super-important affirmation) and then, after receiving the badges we lapse onto self-doubt and we have performance anxiety
Smartphone addiction is reactive behaviour to something. Much alike other forms of addictions, it is indicative of something our mind and bodies need. Therefore, when we crave something, we get the fix, but not necessarily are they solutions. If I’m feeling groggy in the morning, the solution is to get more sleep. The fix is getting coffee.

The reason I had got addicted to social media (orkut) was because I missed the ways I’d connect with people—having discussions, fierce debates, having social relationships while leading the life of a stinging lonely international grad student.

The reason I had got addicted to smartphones were the continuous stimulation—people telling me they like my persona which I had created, people commenting on stuff that I chose to share, people telling me how think of me as a very interesting person, and all the yadi blocks. They are good ego boosters, nice self-esteem makers, and enough to tell me that people bonded with me—that, even though I physically find myself alone or lonely—there are people thousand miles away who think of me, who are aware of me as a person, and who’d care whether I exist or not. All of that is essentially self-affirming.

But when I went to India, I could find my roots. The roots which forms the base of my identity. The friends to whom I don’t need to prove myself on a continuous basis the aspect of my entertaining nature; the friends who were there for me and with who I might not get to talk regularly, with no understanding being lost in the process; the social relations which are as familiar to me as my that old schoolbag. I could re-discover the bonding that could thrive not on passive shows of liking something or someone’s activity, but the bonding that was real, and had meaning, because interaction involved communication.

I had figured it out my way, but research validates it as well: as the rat experiment [5] showed, a rat with social connections do not drink the available spiked (drugged) water.

Therein lies the second key, Solution B, to smartphone addiction. If one finds themselves addicted to the phone while spending time with their spouse, as I had noticed the following couple to do (a common sight, these days)….
I am addicted to googling / quora, asking random questions on the Internet through my smartphone. However, I feel so addicted that I do it without even thinking. Also, half the time it’s not even very important information that I am researching. It was getting me down, especially that I am too busy to do it this much. I felt like it was impulsive and I just had to type in random questions whenever it popped into my head. I was addicted to having an answer to everything I wanted to know. This is not normal. So, I have recently started to write down in a diary all the things I want to ask Google, or all the things I need to do on my smartphone that day such as messaging and email. Every time I think of another question or smartphone task, I add it to the list. I Then I only use my phone during an allocated time by which time many of the questions or tasks are no longer important to me. It has made such a difference to my day and I feel like I have much more time to do real life tasks.

Depends on the teenager.

Smartphones aka dumb phones can be bad for anyone’s mental health if not used properly.

When I say properly, I mean using your phone as little as possible.

Most people are unaware that each cell phone is made with blue light technology, along with emitting off harmful EMR. (Electromagnetic Radiation)

Studies have shown that too much blue light exposure can alter that person’s state of mind, cause deficiencies in the mitochondria, and cause the person to be highly addicted to their phone.

Studies have also shown that an increase use of smartphones or devices can cause memory loss, brain damage, and cancer.

These are just the some of the long term physical affects on the body.

Now don’t forget to mention all of the social media platforms that spit out negativity on a regular basis. This could affect your mental health drastically.

Aishwarya Says:

I have always been against Glorifying Over Work and therefore, in the year 2021, I have decided to launch this campaign “Balancing Life”and talk about this wrong practice, that we have been following since last few years. I will be talking to and interviewing around 1 lakh people in the coming 2021 and publish their interview regarding their opinion on glamourising Over Work.

If you are interested in participating in the same, do let me know.

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The copyright of this Article belongs exclusively to Ms. Aishwarya Sandeep. Reproduction of the same, without permission will amount to Copyright Infringement. Appropriate Legal Action under the Indian Laws will be taken.

If you would also like to contribute to my website, then do share your articles or poems at adv.aishwaryasandeep@gmail.com

We also have a Facebook Group Restarter Moms for Mothers or Women who would like to rejoin their careers post a career break or women who are enterpreneurs.

We are also running a series Inspirational Women from January 2021 to March 31,2021, featuring around 1000 stories about Indian Women, who changed the world. #choosetochallenge

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