Every one of us knows that feeling of dread when we realize we’ve left our cell phone behind. That horrible feeling in the pit of your stomach or that sensation that you’re missing a part of yourself is not as uncommon as you might think. There have been a number of recent studies into a new phobia known as nomophobia. Nomophobia, a phobia so new that it isn’t even in the Microsoft Word dictionary yet, is defined as the fear of being without a cell phone or of not being in range of a cell tower.
Many of you may be thinking that you are above a common ‘cell phone anxiety’ but the statistics are overwhelming. SecurEnvoy, a U.K.-based mobile security service provider, recently conducted a study showing that 66% of people surveyed fear losing their phone. While this may not be as crippling as traditional phobias(i.e. arachnophobia or xenophobia), one can’t ignore the ubiquity of it. The study also showed that the fear was more common amongst women, as 61% of men reported having it versus a staggering 70% of women. Further research showed that nomophobia is even more prevalent among young cell phone users as their numbers came in at 77%.
This new data shows conclusively that with each new piece of technology comes a new human response that didn’t exist before. We are no longer living in the world of our parents. Our children are becoming familiarized with technology at an earlier age than ever before and it is now difficult to imagine a world without a cellphone tethered to one’s side. The average American teen sends 3,339 in a month and many teens claim they can text blindfolded. We can’t escape the truth anymore; for a society that runs as fast as ours does, we need a device that can keep up. Modern cellphones are that tool.
Phones aren’t just for making calls anymore. Playing games, taking pictures, surfing the internet, playing music—our cellphones connect us and keep us up to date. They are our constant companions in awkward situations and they remind us where we need to be. They wake us up in the morning and they even light our way in a dark room. One thing is certain—the connection between human beings and cellphones is one that is here to stay.
Can you relate to Nomophobia? Let us know in the comments below?