Imagine a life without a smartphone? It’s quite difficult isn’t it. If you’re not reading this article via your device, it’s likely you’ve both checked it in the last five minutes and it will be sat within an arm’s reach.

We’re becoming more reliant upon our devices these days and millions of people around the world also have an unhealthy, addictive relationship with them. Addiction to smartphones and technology is on the rise and more and more people are seeking out addiction treatment due to it having a significant impact on all areas of their lives.

Of course, how do you know if you’re addicted to your phone? It’s not exactly like alcohol where you’ll be drunk regularly and become ill, right?

Wrong.

While you may not be drunk, phone addiction can lead to a number of mental health problems, including lowering concentration, increasing anxiety and stress, and having a big impact on insecurity, particularly for those who heavily use social media.

If you are addicted to your smartphone, here are some of the warning signs…

You’re spending more and more time on it

Many of us spend far too much time on our smartphones. Experts suggest you should spend no more than two hours per day outside of work time on your device. However, you won’t be the only one to spend significantly more time.

One of the biggest tell tale signs of a dependency or addiction on a smartphone is if the time you are spending on it continues to increase. You’ll be able to see the data behind your usage on your smartphone and if there’s a continuing trend of excess usage, then you may have a problem.

Cravings!  

Yes, like any form of addiction you may suffer cravings for your smartphone when away from it. This may be during periods where you can’t use it, so perhaps in church or at an event where it isn’t possible to use your phone, while many people suffer this during the night when they are in bed and trying to get to sleep.

Getting up in the night to check your phone for no real reason is also a warning sign that you may have an addiction to your smartphone.

Mood swings if your usage is interrupted

Your life doesn’t revolve around your device, it isn’t the real world. So if you get angry because you’re disrupted when using your device by somebody, whether it be friends, family or even a colleague, then you perhaps need to start asking questions as to whether your relationship with your device is healthy.

That sort of attitude can also isolate you from others, to the point where you may start to feel a lack of connection or increased loneliness, which can again be a sign that you need help.

Lauren Sanchez - Author

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