Literature Review

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Literature Review

In a study of 1600 by Perlow (cite the year), it was found that more than of the respondents would check their cell phones regularly, as listed below:

- 70% said they check their smartphone within an hour of getting up.

- 56% check their phone within an hour of going to sleep.

- 48% check over the weekend, including on Friday and Saturday nights.

- 51% check continuously during vacation.

In fact, almost half of them would also experience "a great deal of anxiety" if they lost their phone and couldn't replace it for a week.

Similarly, in a project called "World unplugged", where 1000 volunteers from 7 different countries were asked to find a 24-hour period to give up all media, it was found that almost all the students agreed that not using mobile phones makes them fidgety.  It was also noted that many volunteers did not even complete the entire project.

According to the Norton Cyber Crime Report 2011, the number of adults in Singapore who claimed they cannot live without being connected to the Internet is also high, as listed in the following table :

As the rate of cellular phone and smartphone ownership among youths increases, so is the potential of cellular phone addiction especially when they spend too much time on their phones these days.

Cellular phone addiction is defined as spending more than seven hours a day using the phone and experiencing symptoms such as anxiety, insomnia and depression when cut off from the device (Nam, 2013). In South Korea, for example, it is reported that roughly 1 in 5 students is said to be addicted to smartphone use. The findings of a study in Pakistan discovered that majority of respondents are not able to have definite priorities between their responsibilities and commitments and their mobile phone usage and they are showing continuously intense addictive behaviour and restlessness.

Using a cellular phone can be addictive because: 

Children by the age of 5 are already using phones & computers etc. hence when they grow, they already are used to access to them and they become more & more addicted to it. Mobile phones have the ability to access the internet and social media websites, which is one of the major causes for mobile phone addiction. People also have the chance to communicate with people conveniently without meeting them face to face. New applications such as Minecraft, Candy Crush, 9gag and other apps on smart phones are fun to use, hence it is also addictive.

Some of the known symptoms of cellular phone addiction are:

- He/she have anxiety about going phoneless

- He/she is afraid to turn off his/her mobile device

- He/she worries about her/his battery going low

- He/she constantly checking the phone for emails,texts and calls

- He/she brings the phone into the toilet and uses it

- He/she is distracted by it when doing work.

- Frequently anticipating calls or messages from other people

- Becoming angry when someone interrupts your phone time, or feeling irritated when not on your phone.

- Choosing to spend time on your phone rather with friends and family or engaging in other activities.

- You get slightly panicky when your phone is out of your line of sight.

- You sleep with your phone beside you or in your bed next to you.

- You constantly manage and review your apps

- You maintain three to five text threads/Snapchat chains going throughout most days.

As cellular phone addiction can be detrimental to youths, our research is useful in gaining insights to the causes of the addition among youths in Singapore and suggesting ways to prevent an escalation of the problem.


In-Soo Nam(2013): A Rising Addiction Among Youths: Smartphones

Aamna Baig(2013), Department of anthropology, Quaid-I-Azam University, Islamabad: A study on mobile phone addiction and its disadvantages:

Jessica Misener(2013): 23 Signs you are addicted to your smartphone

Markham Heid(2013), University of Washington: 4 signs you are addicted to your smartphone

Department of Community Medicine(2010):  A study to evaluate mobile phone dependence among students of a medical college and Associated Hospital of Central India

2 Responses so far.

  1. Insomnia and depression are awful "bedfellow" indeed if you'll pardon the pun
    However I ran across a study that shows that when you treat insomnia, you many times cure your depression as well
    I thought this was such good news. Here is a link to an article about the research.
    I also saw an article in a digital magazine that had some amazing relevant information about insomnia and depression .

  2. TzeShaun says:

    Thank you for your comment, it was very helpful:)

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