Scrolling Addiction: Why can't we put our phones down?

Scrolling Addiction: Why can’t we put our phones down?

If you face a constant urge to check your phone or spend a little more time scrolling down social media feeds, you might already have become addicted before you can even perceive the fact. Scrolling addiction like any other addiction might start with minor reliefs and pleasures. Nevertheless, it might soon take the shape of one of the major behavioural addictions.

Studies showed that smartphone users have escalated to 6.4 billion worldwide. With the increase in statistics of smartphone users, the rate of scrolling addiction has also sparked across the globe.

The Infinite Scrolling Loop

Posts after posts, reels after reels often shoves you into an infinite scrolling loop. You might want to wind up your recreational time and get back to your work again but another interesting video catches your eye and the loop goes on.

As per statistics calculated in 2021, an average adult spends 3 hours 40 minutes scrolling social media posts. In addition to this, an average person in the U.S. tends to check their phones 58 times a day. The pattern smoothly gets you on the road to becoming a scrolling addict.

The Intensity of Product Recommendations

Other than the entertainment media, businesses have played a major role in sticking our thumbs to our mobile screens. E-markets have enjoyed a swift rise in revenue in the past two decades due to the rising trend of online shopping. 6 out of 10 shoppers have stated the online market as an essential part of the brand selection process.

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Hence, greater businesses have started investing in online platforms to initiate or to further develop their online platforms leading to a higher intensity of product recommendations on social media feeds. These recommendations again boost the scrolling addiction of individuals. A bit of regular advice taken from a shopkeeper while selecting a product is replaced by numerous product reviews and price comparisons. A survey showed that 69% of internet users would rather scroll online product reviews than consult an in-store employee.

Why can’t we put our phones down?

The evolution in the education system has gradually made the help of the internet and other information sources mandatory. This certain requirement has opened doors for increased scrolling addiction as any student unlocking a phone for education purposes might get distracted by social media apps and spend a further couple of hours scrolling down mobile feed.

In addition to this, the outbreak of Covid-19 has worsened the situation. The rise of online classes and work-from-home has expanded screen time. Statistics showed that 52% of U.S. graduate students recommend online education over physical classes at the college level.

Another study examining businesses in Europe and North America concluded that around 74% of the sample businesses have been functioning remotely after the outbreak of the pandemic. This increased screen time further paves way for our respective behavioural addictions. Students and employees are more prone to being distracted by social media apps during online sessions ultimately contributing to rising levels of scrolling addiction.

How unlimited Scrolling is affecting our Mental Health and Socialization?

Categorized as an addiction, the infinite scrolling by adults and teenagers surely possess adverse effects. The direct links of these effects can be traced to sleeping disorders which eventually damage the day’s schedule of an individual. Deloitte Research conducted in the U.K. showed that almost a fifth of the population sample of age 18-24 years old checks their phones immediately after waking up. Moreover, 41% of the given age group checks their smartphone 5 minutes before going to sleep.

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Other than that, the absolute distraction bestowed during scrolling hours left our chores incomplete. Gradually, the results then climb to higher stress and depression levels. These stress levels combined with the lack of leftover time for loved ones often result in problems in relationships of an individual. As per a study, 36% of iPhone users have reported tensions in their relationships due to their scrolling addiction.

Remedial Exercises to Curb Scrolling Addictions

Several techniques and strategies can be applied to overcome the issue. To start with you can set limits to screen time on your phone to remind you to put your phone down. Moreover, you can try to break your scrolling time into smaller pieces at different intervals of the day. In this way, it would become easier to skip it among more demanding day chores. However, make sure to add and stick to more healthy day chores in your to-do list for the day.

Apart from knowing and exercising remedial strategies, willpower remains the most powerful element in curbing the scrolling addiction. Having said that, recognizing oneself as being addicted stands as a crucial element as well. A recent study conducted upon a sample population of iPhone users showed that 78% of people underestimated the time they spent on their phones.

Summary

To summarize, the increased use of smartphones gave birth to scrolling addiction as another peculiar form of behavioral addiction

1 High rate of social media activity has resulted in the formation of an infinite scrolling loop.

2 The success of e-markets has led to greater intensity of product recommendations and ultimately greater scrolling through brands and product reviews.

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3 Advancements in work and education have made it hard to leave one’s phone aside.

4 The scrolling addiction paves way for mental health hazards and deterioration of one’s relationships in society.

5 Certain remedial strategies and exercises combined with willpower could help overcome the scrolling addiction.

Amidst its spread-out effects scrolling addiction, symptoms need to be recognized and addressed. It’s not easy to tackle this addiction given the now and then requirements of smartphones. However, one’s willpower stands as the strongest weapon in handling the issue.

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