Nomophobia: the growing dependence on cell phones

Due to advancements in technology, social networking and the presence of the Internet on virtually every cell phone, we have spent many hours of the day connected to “smartphone“.

Indeed, when we are left in secret, without a cell phone, we feel lost in this world dependent on new technologies.

Cell phone addiction: causes and symptoms

Although the use of technology can be very useful, as it allows us to be in constant contact with almost every corner of the planet, incommunicado detention can produce a feeling of anxiety that overwhelms us and makes us crave the moment when we are connected again.

The anxious and obsessive symptoms we had when we ran out of cellphones have been recognized by psychologists, and this excessive and irrational fear of not having a smartphone has been dubbed “NomophobiaThe term comes from the English expression “no-mobile-phone phobia”. We will talk about this syndrome today, not only to focus on the negative aspects of new technologies, but also to try to think about how we use them.

The first study on nomophobia

Many experts speak of nomophobia as the new disease of the 21st century. Studies on this phenomenon began in 2011 in the UK, with research conducted by UK Post and the YouGo Demoscopic Institute.

The study looked at 2,163 subjects and the data revealed that 53% of UK mobile phone users feel anxious when their cell phone battery runs out, loses it or is no longer covered. The study also found that 58% of men and 48% of women suffer from this disorder.

The study also concluded that the stress levels exhibited by people with nomophobia were comparable to what a person may have the day before their wedding. In addition, 55% of participants said they “felt isolated” when they did not have a cell phone.

How is a person with nomophobia

There are a lot of people who are suffering cell phone addiction and are connected 24 hours a day, And experts believe that the nomophobe’s profile is that of a person who has low self-confidence and low self-esteem, with a lack of social and conflict resolution skills, and that in his spare time he only uses her mobile and seems unable to enjoy without her.

In terms of age, this disorder is more common in adolescents because they have a greater need to be accepted by others and are more familiar with new technologies.


Symptoms that a person with nomophobia may experience are as follows:

  • Feeling anxious
  • tachycardias
  • obsessive thoughts

  • Headache
  • An upset stomach

Education is fundamental to prevent this type of pathology associated with the use of new technologies

Nomophobia is another of the pathologies directly associated with the use and development of new technologies. Since the advent of smartphones, more and more people depend exclusively on these devices and more and more users have developed this disorder.

Although adults can also suffer from this disorder, children and youth are more likely to suffer from mental health problems due to their addiction to new technologies, As they spend many hours connected and develop their identity on social networks. These are the “digital natives”; people who have lived from birth surrounded by such technologies.

Learn to use technology in moderation

In this regard, the psychologist Jonathan García-Allen in the article “FOMO syndrome: feeling that the lives of others are more interesting”, comments that “education is fundamental to prevent this type of pathology and must be done as soon as possible. young age”. According to García-Allen himself, “The main problem is not new technologies, but their pathological use, which can materialize both in addiction and in uses that can generate psychological problems.”

Therefore, the key is not to prohibit the use of smartphones for children and adolescents, but to make them understand the importance of correct use of these devices and to ensure an education that includes both the positive aspects of new technologies and the abusive and pathological uses. In this regard, the prevention in the family and at school, this is the key element.

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