Cell Phone Addiction among Teens in America

“​Nearly 80% of teens in the new survey said they checked their phones hourly, and 72% said they felt the need to immediately respond to texts and social networking messages”​(Wallace, 2016). Kelly Wallace is a CNN reporter who did a survey on teens and parents about phone addiction. In today’s society everyone has a phone in their hands from infants to adults, phones are such a big part of today’s society. People use phones for everything in their lives and are always on them.

This is a problem especially for teens who are constantly on their phones this could be texting a friend or going on social media. This could lead to lasting problems like mental health issues or it could lead them to text and drive.

It is important to look at this issue through a cultural lens to study how the overuse of phones affects teens in todays society. The overuse of cellphones in today’s society could lead to teens texting while driving, mental health problems, and being exposed to dangers online.

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Phone addiction can be such a problem that teens can’t handle not having their phones even on the road. “​Everyday, more than eight people are killed and more than 1,000 are injured in crashes reported to involve distracted driving, which includes activities such as talking on a cell phone, texting and eating, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration” (Wallace, 2017)​.

Kelly Wallace wrote another article this time about texting while driving. Distracted driving was always an issue, but the rise of cellphones and other electronic devices has made distracted driving more of a problem.

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“One estimate links every additional one million cell phone subscriptions to a 19% rise in distracted driving fatalities. At present, over 275 million Americans own cell phones, and 81% admit to talking while driving” (Distracted driving: Fast lane to disaster, 2012). The publisher of this article was the Harvard Men’s Health Watch. Teens are most likely to text and drive and study done by ​Pew Research Center “nearly one in three 16- or 17-year-olds said they have texted while driving” (Lamotte, 2017).

Sandee Lamotte is a CNN journalists who specializes on health issues. ​This form of distracted driving is the worst and causes the most fatalities and is the most common form of distracted driving. When ever teens hear their phone ring something goes of in their mind to pick it up immediately. “​Harvard University psychiatrist John Ratey and other researchers have found that the brain receives a rush when it processes a text message or ring–the same high a gambler feels when hitting the jackpot” (Hanes, 2009). Stephanie hanes graduated from Yale University​ and is the author of two books. ​Psychologists would call this inattentional blindness the brain doesn’t process what is in eyesight like the street lights or other cars. “97 percent said it was completely unacceptable to send a text or email while driving. But two-thirds of those people admitted talking on their own phones while driving, and 1 in 7 have texted while driving” (Hanes, 2009).

Most people are against texting while driving but sometimes they can’t seem to put their phone because it is highly addictive. Phone addiction could also put a strain on mental health. Constantly being on your cell phone could lead to the development of mental health problems. “Researchers from Korea University in Seoul used brain imaging to study the brains of 19 teenage boys who were diagnosed with internet or smartphone addiction.” The study compared the brains to 19 teen boys who were not addicted and the ones who were addicted had a chemical called GABA which slows down the brain (Lamotte , 2017).

“A new study links anxiety, severe depression, suicide attempts and suicide with the rise in use of smartphones, tablets and other devices.” Jean Twenge, psychology professor at San Diego State University released a study that connects the rise of cellphone use to the rising rates of depression, suicide attempts and suicide among teens.” Counselors and medical professionals agree with this connection to the rise of cellphones and suicidal tendencies (Vickroy, 2017). Donna VIckroy a reporter for TCA regional news. ​This could also lead to the development of phobias and a fear without their phone know as Nomophobia. ​Sandee Lamotte a writer for CNN said​ “Nomophobia is​ a 21st-century term for the fear of not being able to use your cell phone or other smart device.”

Caglar Yildirim, an assistant professor of human computer interaction made a scale to use for his research for cell phone addiction and nomophobia. People who score high on his scale means that they might have severe anxiety when you can’t access your cell phone. This could interfere with their social life and their ability to work or study (Lamotte, 2017). Cell phones could lead to mental health problems and social problems. The overuse cell phones can negatively affect teens brains and it could lead to being exposed to dangers online. “Youth face a variety of types of potential dangers when using the internet and other digital technology. Dangers that have received the most attention include sexual solicitations, cyberbullying or harassment, and more recently, involvement in sexting’ (Mitchell, 2010)

Kimberly MItchell is an assistant professor of psychology at CACRC. Cyberbullying is the most common problem teens could face. “Cyberbullying is any bullying activity that occurs in a Web-based medium, such as text, email, social media, and/ or any other kind of electronic format.” They would usually send text or images with the intent to hurt or embarrass other people (Haber, 2011). Joel D. Haber has over twenty year of experience as a clinical psychologist and has a PHD is psychology. “Michele Grillo, a criminal justice professor at Monmouth University in West Long Branch, said children present unique challenges with respect to Internet safety — they are innocent and curious, desire independence and fear punishment” (Columbus, 2012).

Gina Columbus is an editor and writer for OncLive. Children are most likely to give out their personal information because they are uneducated about the issue. This information could be used for malicious intent or sold to businesses and companies (Columbus, 2012). “Approximately one in seven youth (13%), ages 10-17, receive an unwanted sexual solicitation in a one-year period.” These would involve sending sexual pictures and texts or doing sexual acts online. About over half of these sexual solicitations come from teens and most of them come from people they know in person (Mitchell, 2010).

Cell phones have done a lot of things for people and had a huge impact on the short time they were around. They can do a lot of good but when teens overuse them they could lead to texting while driving, mental health issues, and being exposed to dangers on online. Educating teens and adults about these issues and limiting screen time could help to reduce the problem. If these problems aren’t address then technology could change teens brains, lead to more accident rates on the road, and a rise in cyberbullying rates. Cell phones can be use for good or with bad intent it’s up to adults and schools to educate teens on these issues so they don’t happen in the future.

Work Cited

  1. Columbus, Gina. ‘Staying Cyber-Safe in School and at Home.’​ Asbury Park Press​, 31 Aug. 2012​. SIRS Issues Researcher​, ​https://sks-sirs-com.ezproxy.library.nashville.org​.
  2. ‘Distracted Driving: Fast Lane to Disaster.’​ Harvard men’s health watch​, Apr. 2012​. SIRS Issues Researcher​, ​https://sks-sirs-com.ezproxy.library.nashville.org​.
  3. Haber, Joel D. ‘A Cyberbullying Protection Plan.’​ Camping Magazine​, 2011, pp. 32​. SIRS Issues Researcher​, ​https://sks-sirs-com.ezproxy.library.nashville.org​.
  4. Hanes, Stephanie. ‘Texting while Driving: The New Drunk Driving.’​ Christian Science Monitor​, 05 Nov. 2009​. SIRS Issues Researcher​, ​https://sks-sirs-com.ezproxy.library.nashville.org​.
  5. LaMotte, Sandee. ‘Smartphone Addiction could be Changing Your Brain.’​ CNN Wire Service​, 30 Nov. 2017​. SIRS Issues Researcher​, ​https://sks-sirs-com.ezproxy.library.nashville.org​.
  6. Mitchell, Kimberly. ‘Remaining Safe and Avoiding Dangers Online.’​ Prevention Researcher​, 2010, pp. 7-9​. SIRS Issues Researcher​,​https://sks-sirs-com.ezproxy.library.nashville.org​.
  7. St. George, Donna. ‘Parents, it’s True: Teens are Constantly on Cellphones.’​ Washington Post (Washington, DC)​, 20 Apr. 2010, pp. B.1​. SIRS Issues Researcher​, https://sks-sirs-com.ezproxy.library.nashville.org
  8. Vickroy, Donna. ‘Helping Teens Turn Off in a World that’s ‘always on’.’​ TCA Regional News​, 21 Dec. 2017​. SIRS Issues Researcher​,​https://sks-sirs-com.ezproxy.library.nashville.org​..
  9. Wallace, Kelly. ‘Distracted Driving: Urging Companies to Crack Down.’​ CNN Wire Service​, 03 Apr. 2017​. SIRS Issues Researcher​,​https://sks-sirs-com.ezproxy.library.nashville.org​.
  10. Wallace, Kelly. ‘Half of Teens Think they’Re Addicted to their Smartphones.’​ CNN Wire Service​, 02 May. 2016​. SIRS Issues Researcher​,​https://sks-sirs-com.ezproxy.library.nashville.org​
  11. https://sks-sirs-com.ezproxy.library.nashville.org/

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Cell Phone Addiction among Teens in America. (2021, Dec 14). Retrieved from http://studymoose.com/cell-phone-addiction-among-teens-in-america-essay

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