Do you ever find yourself feeling a little bit nervous when your smartphone isn’t with you? Where you’re wondering who might have sent you messages, emails, or tried to call, or who might have commented on your latest Facebook post? That anxiety you feel is smartphone separation anxiety, also known as nomophobia.

It is also a problem that according to scientists, is a growing one on the rise, and one that they are trying to understand. One of the possible reasons offered is our growing reliance on social media to get updates on our friends, family, co-workers, news, and so on, and not having your smartphone with you means that you won’t be able to find out what’s going on, and also you won’t be able to share your current activities (not that it really needs sharing, sometimes).

According to Dr Ki Joon Kim, of the City University of Hong Kong, “As smartphones evoke more personal memories, users extend more of their identity onto them. When users perceive smartphones as their extended selves, they are more likely to become attached to the devices, which, in turn, leads to nomophobia by heightening the phone proximity-seeking tendency.”

Dr Ki is also worried that this problem could grow worse in the future as services become increasingly tailored to our preferences, which we’re seeing on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter where the feed is curated based on posts you’ve engaged in and reacted to.

Filed in Cellphones >General. Read more about Health, Science and _cold.

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