Hang Up to Relax

A Kent State University study has found that students who were heavy cellphone users tended to be more anxious, have lower grade-point averages and a reduced feelings of happiness. Researchers surveyed more than 500 students who allowed them to match their grade point averages with their levels of phone use. The researchers also took a standard test measuring anxiety and level of students’ life satisfaction.

Kent State associate professor Andrew Lepp explains the study’s findings: “Interviews with students suggest that they feel a sense of obligation to remain constantly connected to the network through their phone. This obligation to stay connected—while at home, at school, in the car, at the gym, in the park, etc.—appears to be a significant source of stress for students.”

And the results are not confined to school campuses or classrooms—this detrimental cellphone use happens in the professional world, too. Lepp believes adults feel the same stress with cellphones that constantly connect them to the office, to their work.

Lepp recommends that people disconnect daily, even if only briefly. “I think mental health requires it,” he says.

So, are you too connected? Start monitoring your cellphone use and start changing the habits that might negatively impact your performance and well-being.


Betsy Simnacher is a freelance writer who has been published in numerous newspapers and magazines nationwide. She lives in the suburbs of Dallas.

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