Do I Really Have an Addiction to My Phone?

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Do I Really Have an Addiction to My Phone?

Everywhere you go you can see someone who is talking, texting, scrolling, or playing on their phone. The cell phone has become the accessory that no one can leave home without or they feel like they have impending FOMO – fear of missing out.  Although there are many who claim they are addicted to their phones as an exaggeration for this very reason, is there such a thing as being addicted to a cell phone?

Cell phone usage is not recognized as an addiction in the medical field as a mental health issue. What seems to affect the brain the most with the overuse of a cell phone is harming the attention span in the brain and the overall ability to focus. Higher levels of GABA, a neurotransmitter in the cortex of the brain which obstructs neurons, has decreased efficiency in the brain which means a person who uses their cell phone in abundance is more vulnerable to becoming distracted more readily. When the brain experiences more GABA, then the brain has less room for glutamate-glutamine which stimulates the brain. As the brain gets infiltrated with GABA rather than glutamate-glutamine, the result is less mind control and poorer concentration.  

Questions you can ask yourself in regard to the overuse of your cell phone
  1. Has conflict with my loved ones ensued due to my cell phone use?
  2. Have I neglected my responsibilities in lieu of using my cell phone?
  3. Do I have perpetual urges to constantly be on my cell phone?
  4. Has using my cell phone become the most prevalent activity throughout my day?
  5. Have I consistently increased my cell phone usage during the day?
  6. Do I lie about my cell phone usage?
  7. Is my cell phone the only tool I have to keep me from being discontented and irritable?
  8. Am I paying attention to my phone more than my spouse, kids, or loved ones?
  9. Is my cell phone the most important thing I have in my life?

Answering “yes” to many of the questions may point out that there is definitely a problem with overuse. There are risks associated with overusing a cell phone such as changes in the brain, strained eyes from the emitting blue light, and changes in sleep patterns. With anything that is used in excess, there could be underlying issues that need to be addressed and using a cell phone to numb out from the world rather than facing it head on could decrease your battery life altogether.

If you or someone you know has a problem with drugs and alcohol, The Kimberly Center has a treatment plan that will work just for you. Our evidence-based therapies are designed to last a lifetime and can help you to build a foundation in recovery.

Call us today to begin: 855-4-KCENTER (855-452-3683)  

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