What impact is mobile technology having on teens and young adults?
According to a new study from Kent State University, the more time college students spend talking, texting, Facebooking or surfing the Internet on their smartphones, the more likely they are to be anxious, unhappy and get lower grades.
Plugged In.com reports on the research, in which students kept a record of their mobile phone use. They also took psychological tests designed to measure anxiety and life satisfaction.
Andrew Lepp, the co-author of the study says “The lower frequency users use their phone to keep in touch, check the Web and update Facebook but they can put it away and get on with other tasks.”
“But the higher users are not able to control it and are glued to the cellphone. They need to unplug and find some personal time where they can disconnect from the network.”
Dr. Lepp says we all need time to be alone with our thought and recover from the daily stresses of life in a way that doesn’t involve electronic media.
Meanwhile, some teenagers are sleeping with their cellphones—and sending texts during the night without any memory of it the next morning.
Dr. Gerald Rosen, who leads the pediatric sleep disorders program at Children’s Hospitals of Minnesota, believes teens are being conditioned to respond to their phones almost like a mother responds to her baby.
He says “If you’re a mother, you awaken to the sound of your child crying. Even if it’s not a loud noise, it will trigger an awakening. That’s essentially what’s happening with lots of kids with their phones.”
Dr. Rosen also believes there are deeper problems to explore when anyone is so attached to a piece of technology that they have to sleep with it.
I’m Bill Maier for Shine.FM.
Listen to today’s audio here.