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7 Signs You Have a Smartphone Addiction (And How to Break It) »

7 Signs You Have a Smartphone Addiction (And How to


If you go pretty much anywhere these days, you’ll find most people glued to their phones, probably suffering from a smartphone addiction without even knowing it. Smartphones have become more like an extra limb than a tool to access information, and scientists have even come up with a word for the fear of going without your device: nomophobia. This word is short for no mobile phone phobia, and it affects a surprising amount of people.

According to a New York Times report, teens and adults look at their phones around 150 times per day and send roughly 110 text messages. A 2015 Pew Research Centre study also found that 24% of teens reported looking at the Internet “almost constantly.” Surveys done in the United States and Europe discovered that between 1.5% to 8.2% of people suffer from a condition called Internet Addiction Disorder (IAD), similar to smartphone addiction. Other reports have found even higher rates between 6% and 18.5%. Furthermore, a whopping 46% of smartphone owners say they couldn’t survive without their phones.

While smartphones have provided us new ways to communicate with loved ones and access information from anywhere, they also have the potential to disconnect us from our surroundings. When we unlock our phones, we have the whole world at our fingertips, and sometimes, this can seem overwhelming. With so many choices, many of us get sucked into keeping up with the latest social media trends or scouring news articles and forget about our real lives at home. This new virtual world offers hours of entertainment and memes galore, but at what cost?

Using your smartphone too much can cause serious mental, physical and emotional issues over time. Below, we’ll go over signs of a smartphone addiction, and what you can do to break it.

Here are 7 signs you’re suffering from a smartphone addiction (And what to do about it):

smartphone addiction

1 – You suffer from insomnia, often waking up in the middle of the night to check your phone.

Smartphone addiction can lead to trouble falling and staying asleep. Research shows that the blue light coming from your phone can disrupt your circadian rhythm and melatonin levels, which throws your sleep out of whack. If you often stay on your phone leading up to bedtime and even wake up in the middle of the night to check notifications, you might have a smartphone addiction.

Try to get off technology a couple of hours before bed, and dim the lights so your body knows it’s time to sleep soon. Keep your phone in another room for a while if you feel tempted to use it, or put it on a table out of reach to charge overnight. If you do wake up in the middle of the night, try reading a book or getting up to walk around until you feel sleepy again.

2 – You have bad anxiety when you don’t have your phone near you.

Like most addictions, you feel anxious without your smartphone near you at all times. If you can’t have access to it or use it as a crutch, you simply don’t know what to do with yourself. However, don’t beat yourself up if you feel this way. As we stated at the beginning of the article, roughly half of the population feels uneasy without their phones. This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t work on correcting the anxiety if it impedes your life, though.

Try to go for some periods of time throughout the day where you don’t check your phone at all. After you’ve mastered this for a week or two, go out for a walk in the park without your phone or maybe even on a couple of errands. At first, it will feel downright scary to not have your phone on you, but eventually, you’ll notice how freeing and calm you feel without it.

3 – Social media stresses you out or makes you depressed.

Many people use their smartphones primarily to keep up with social media. However, a lot of people report feeling anxious or depressed after looking at their social media, perhaps due to comparing themselves with others or reading negative comments. We’ve become social media addicts, and this can have detrimental impacts on our emotional and even physical health. While being able to talk to anyone in the world 24/7 can seem exciting, it can lead you to distance yourself or even avoid the people around you.

Social media shouldn’t be seen as a replacement for real-life interactions. Checking in a couple of times a day for messages or updates from friends won’t hurt, but endless hours of scrolling can impair decision-making and lead to riskier decisions, a study found. Other reports have linked heavy social media use with increased anxiety and depression.

If you feel like you have a compulsive tendency to check your social accounts many times throughout the day, you might have social media as well as smartphone addiction.

check your phone meme

4 – You can’t seem to do any task for long periods of time without checking your phone.

Do you find yourself distracted from the task at hand often? Maybe when you’re putting up laundry or washing the dishes, you take frequent breaks to check your phone for notifications. Or, you might even check text messages while driving, which can lead to serious consequences. No matter what you’re doing, you just can’t seem to stay away from your smartphone for too long.

Smartphone addiction can lead to problems paying attention and remaining engaged in conversation. If you have trouble completing tasks without checking your phone multiple times, try putting it in a different room so it doesn’t distract you.

5 – You have physical feelings of discomfort without your phone.

You not only feel psychological symptoms when you don’t have your phone on you, but physical feelings start to creep in as well. A study found that people who had their phones taken away and couldn’t answer their phones while completing puzzles, they suffered from the following symptoms:

  • heart rate and blood pressure increase
  • feelings of anxiety and unpleasantness
  • cognitive abilities decreased

Other physical symptoms can include sweating, nervousness, restlessness, and other feelings similar to what you might feel if you have anxiety.

6 – You mindlessly scroll for hours.

If you find yourself being on your phone without having a need for it and spending long periods of time looking at social media or other sites, you might have an addiction. Using our phones as a tool to access information, talk to loved ones, or complete work can improve our quality of life. However, using it as an escape or to decrease boredom will only lead to feelings of unhappiness down the road.

pop meme7 – You feel phantom vibrations.

Many people report feeling their phone go off when they haven’t gotten a notification at all. In fact, one study found that 90% of undergraduate students experienced this phenomenon, which occurs when the user perceives vibrations from their phones but doesn’t actually get a call, text, or notification. Scientists have said this causes people to reach for their phones compulsively, which resembles an addiction.

If this sounds like you, try to gradually decrease the number of times you check your phone throughout the day. You’ll start to gain mental clarity and just feel better overall without being glued to your phone all day.

How to break a smartphone addiction

Sometimes, breaking an addiction means you need to just go cold turkey for a while. This might not work for everyone, but heavy users should experience what it feels like looking at the world without filtering it through a screen for a period of time. This will help reset brain chemistry and remind them that they can live without their phone; they just needed to remind themselves of it.

Here are some tips for getting off your phone:

  • Don’t keep your phone in your room at night. Charge it elsewhere so you don’t feel tempted to use it before bed or during the night.
  • Practice going places without your phone. You’ll remember what it felt like during the good old days when smartphones didn’t exist and people just went about their days.
  • Get out and socialize. Many people who compulsively use their phones simply feel lonely or bored. If you replace the time spent on your phone with real-life relationships, you’ll start to realize how much better you feel living in the real world.
  • Find a hobby. Instead of being on your phone, why not delve into your creative side or go for a bike ride? With any addiction, you just need to find something else to focus your attention on.

smartphone addictionFinal thoughts on smartphone addiction

Smartphones have become so pervasive in society that they affect every area of our lives. We rely on our phones for so much that it seems almost impossible to live without them. However, we should remember to use them as a tool to improve our lives rather than as an escape or a crutch. As with anything, we should use them in moderation and remember the beautiful world we live in outside our screens.

Health

7 of the Best Tips on How to Help Someone Battling Addiction

7 of the Best Tips on How to Help Someone


7 of the Best Tips on How to Help Someone Battling Addiction

There are few experiences more difficult or heartbreaking than watching someone you love struggle with addiction. When someone you love is being controlled by their addiction you’re often left feeling helpless and powerless. It seems like there’s nothing you can do to help them.

Even if you feel like there’s nothing you can do to help someone who’s battling addiction, there are some ways you can be helpful. Wondering what you can do? Here are a few suggestions.

1. Educate Yourself 

There are a lot of persistent misconceptions about addiction that make it really hard to understand.

For example, many people still believe that addiction is a choice. They believe that if the addict tried hard enough to quit or wanted to quit enough that they would be able to quit. This belief is based on the misconception that addicts are people with weak willpower, who cannot “just say no.”

In reality, addiction is a disease of both the body and the mind. The disease of the body manifests as the physical addiction to the addict’s substance of choice. Addiction is also a mental illness that manifests as an obsession with consuming the addict’s substance of choice, often to escape co-existing mental illnesses like depression and anxiety.

If you want to help someone struggling with addiction, you’ll need to understand how the disease of addiction works, how it manifests in their life, and how it can be treated. One of the best resources for learning about addiction is the book Alcoholics Anonymous, which is the basis of the 12-step program of the same name. 

Books published by Hazelden Publishing are also very helpful resources for understanding addiction.

If you’re going to turn to the Internet for your information about addiction, be sure to find reputable sources. Webpages that end in .org or .gov are more likely to have accurate information. 

Being well-informed about the disease of addiction and why addicts act the way they do will help you to talk to your loved one with compassion and empathy.

2. Let Them Know You Care 

Addiction is often called the disease of loneliness, and anyone who’s battling addiction can tell you why. Addiction isolates people from those they love because the addiction becomes more important than relationships. And many addicts end up ruining their close relationships because their behavior, driven their addiction, causes them to hurt those they love the most.

This leaves most addicts feeling like there isn’t anyone in the world who cares about them. So, if you do care about someone who is struggling with addiction, it’s important to let them know you still care.

Tell them how much you love them and how important they are to you. And tell them that you care about their health and what happens to them. 

Finding out that someone does, in fact, care about them and what happens to them will let the addict know that they are not as alone as they believe and that what they do to themselves does matter to someone else.

3. Tell Them the Truth 

While addicts do need to hear that people care about them, they also need to hear the difficult truths about how their behavior is impacting others. Many people who love addicts fear telling them the truth because they don’t want to upset the addict, who may lash out at them or use substances as a result of the uncomfortable conversation.

Though it’s hard to do, it’s very important to be honest with those you love who are struggling with addiction. They need to know that their behavior doesn’t impact just them. They need to know that their behavior is hurting you. They need to know that you worry about them all the time.

If they get angry at you and refuse to listen, accept that they aren’t yet ready to hear the truth. Try again later. But no matter what, keep being honest. Sugarcoating how you feel about their addiction won’t help them at all. 

4. Encourage Them to Get Help

To get and stay sober, addicts need to receive treatment for their disease. Anyone who truly has the disease of addiction will not be able to stop using substances without help. 

It’s incredibly important for you as the loved one of an addict to understand that you are not qualified to help your loved one get sober. Unless you’re a certified substance abuse counselor or a recovered addict yourself, then you don’t have the necessary training or experience to get them sober.

And even if you are a certified substance abuse counselor or a recovered addict yourself, you’re probably not the one that your loved one wants to receive treatment from. You’re too close to the situation to be truly helpful.

So, it’s very important to encourage your addicted loved one to seek professional treatment. Help them find an inpatient or outpatient opiate rehab and addiction treatment program. Or suggest that they attend a 12-step program. 

If they are resistant to getting treatment, continue to reinforce that addiction is a disease that requires treatment.

5. Let Them Know You Believe in Them 

Many addicts don’t seek treatment because they are convinced that it’s impossible for them to stop using substances. They’re so afraid of failing to get sober that they don’t even try. 

This is where you can provide the boost they need. You can assure them that you believe they are capable of getting and staying sober. Remind them that anyone can get sober if they are willing to seek treatment and commit to their recovery.

Letting them know that you believe in them may provide the confidence they need to attempt sobriety. And reminding them that you believe in them can provide the support they need to stay sober once they seek treatment. 

6. Give a Little Tough Love 

There’s a fine line between providing love and support to an addict and enabling an addict. Sometimes the actions you take that you think are helping the addict are actually helping them avoid the consequences of their addiction.

Addicts need to experience the consequences of their disease before they get sober. If they don’t understand that their disease is hurting them and others, they won’t see the need to get sober. 

One of the most painful things to do when you love an addict is to give them tough love. This may look like telling them that they can’t live with you anymore. Or it may look like cutting them off financially. It may even look like telling them that you can’t associate with them anymore because their behavior is so harmful to you.

As painful as it is to dish out this tough love, it’s necessary for the addict’s well-being. And more importantly, it’s necessary for your well-being.

7. Take Care of Yourself 

When you’re trying to be helpful to an addict, it’s essential to put your well-being first. Though they don’t intend to be, the disease of addiction makes addicts energetic vampires. They’ll suck you dry if you let them.

Addicts will also break your heart over and over if you let them. They don’t mean to, but they can’t help it. Their addiction rules their life and it makes them do things they would never do if they weren’t in the throes of their disease.

So, you need to take care of yourself when you’re helping an addict. If they’re hurting you, you need to stop trying to help. If your mental health is suffering from trying to help, you need to stop. If they’re taking advantage of you, you need to stop trying to help.

You cannot let an addict drag you down with them.

Helping Someone Battling Addiction

Helping someone who’s battling addiction is a difficult task. You can try these suggestions, but it’s important to remember that you have no control over the addict or their addiction. It’s possible that they may not get sober, no matter how much you try to help.

So, do what you can, but keep your expectations low. Try to help, but be willing to disengage if the addict is being harmful or you’re getting hurt. 

For more information about helping someone you love who is struggling with addiction, check out our blog post about what’s important in recovery. 

Health

4 Books About Addiction Recovery to Help Inspire Positive Change in Your Life

4 Books About Addiction Recovery to Help Inspire Positive Change


4 Books About Addiction Recovery to Help Inspire Positive Change in Your Life

When recovering from any sort of addiction, it often feels like you’re all alone. The truth is that addiction is common. More people suffer from it than most of us realize.

Something good to come from this is the fact that those experiences help us in our own fight against addiction. Instead of letting that segregated feeling consume our every thought, we read about others who’ve gone through the exact same thing.

If you’re in a dark place right now, try reading some of these books about addiction recovery. They’ll help far more than you think.

1. Black Out by Sarah Hepola

This book tells the story of a woman who goes on a feminist and freedom-inspired drinking binge that doesn’t ever seem to stop. In the end, everything catches up with her and she must find a way to begin that long road to recovery.

Humor, sorrow, and self-realization are only some of the starring emotions portrayed in this book. A witty writing style makes this book a quick read even though the heavy topics don’t make it easy to digest.

But despite the darker tones, there’s a hint of quirk and amusement that shine in this all too familiar story.

2. How to Grow Up by Michelle Tea

Coming to the realization that something needs to change is one of the most difficult parts of recovery.

This entire journey is what makes this book one of the more interesting recovery books around. It reads more like a how-to book than a memoir at times, guiding the reader through each step.

Follow along with the story as the character finds out that their addiction isn’t what they treasure most in life.

3. Party Girl by Anna David

This story focuses on the ultimate question all addiction recovery books need to ask: what do I do now?

After the protagonist breaks free of her addiction and is steady on the road to sobriety, she’s faced with obstacle after obstacle. Each one dents her new sober armor a little bit, making the next one even hard to face.

This book does a great job of showing the struggle of someone who is doing everything the right way but needs to stay strong against all odds. Nothing worth having is ever easy. 

4. Permanent Midnight by Jerry Stahl

Even those who are both successful and creative struggle with addiction. This gripping memoir show this with sharp clarity.

Heroin addiction causes this writer to make many mistakes throughout his life, even against his own better judgment. It shares with the world all of the terrible side effects of some of the harshest of drugs.

The way it’s presented in this book makes the entire journey both captivating and educational.

The eventual and heart-wrenching downfall is hard to swallow. But it leads to a better life for him and his family.

Let These Books About Addiction Inspire You

With these books and their experiences at your side, addiction recovery becomes a little easier. It’s always good to learn from both the mistakes and victories written upon those pages.

But we all have our own stories to tell. The books about addiction recovery listed above are only a few points of view.

Your own story might help someone else in their recovery someday. So why not try your hand at writing your own memoir? Don’t forget to check out these tips on becoming a better writer to give your memoir the best start possible.

Health

Reasons to Finally Get Clean: Effects of Addiction on Your Health and Life

Reasons to Finally Get Clean: Effects of Addiction on Your


Reasons to Finally Get Clean: Effects of Addiction on Your Health and Life

Are you struggling with addiction but can’t seem to get motivated to get clean? It’s important to understand how detrimental substance abuse is to your health and well-being.

In addition to causing countless illnesses and physical issues, addiction can be fatal. In fact, in 2016 alone, 63,632 people died in the United States as a result of an overdose. 

If you think you can continue using drugs and alcohol without serious side-effects, you’re wrong. Eventually, it will catch up with you.

Keep reading get a better understand of the effects of addiction on your health and quality of life.

Physical Repercussions

Depending on the type of drug you’re addicted to, there could be a number of physical risks. These could include injuries related to an overdose or long-term illness.

Alcohol and narcotics can wreak havoc on your liver. Years of abuse could lead to liver disease or cancer.

Hard drugs and alcohol can cause brain damage after years of heavy abuse. You could also become susceptible to hepatitis, heart disease, and stroke.

Finally, substance abuse weakens your immune system, making you more vulnerable to common illnesses.

Damage to Your Mental Health

Addiction doesn’t only harm your body. It can also lead to mental and emotional problems.

Most drugs have a “comedown” or withdrawal period associated with them. These periods can lead to serious depression and anxiety.

You may abuse drugs and alcohol to cover up preexisting mental problems or issues with self-confidence. This is a dangerous cycle to get caught in. Instead of addressing your problems, you’re making them worse by digging yourself into a hole.

The best thing you can do is to seek professional help. Places like this center can help you face your addiction head-on. 

Addiction Ruins Relationships

Addiction may cause you to isolate yourself. You may either want to hide your substance abuse or feel you can’t identify with your friends and family.

Abuse may also cause irritability, anger, or erratic behavior. This can lead to tension between you and loved ones, especially if you’re shutting them out.

If you notice your relationships starting to crumble, it’s time to seek help. Your family and friends are your biggest support system. It may be difficult, but reaching out to them for help could be just the thing you need to get on the path to recovery.

Financial Hardships

Nobody likes dealing with financial stress. Unfortunately, addiction and money issues go hand in hand.

Supporting a drug habit is expensive. Plus, once you’re addicted, paying for it takes precedence over everything else. Before you know it, you’re having trouble paying your bills.

To add to the problem, the more addicted you become, the more expensive your habit will be. That’s why it’s important to seek treatment before you’re in over your head.

Understand the Effects of Addiction

If you want to get clean but can’t seem to find the motivation or strength, it’s important to seek help. The longer you continue abusing drugs or alcohol, the more damage you’re doing to your body.

Understanding the effects of addiction is a good way to find the inspiration to get clean. Keep the points discussed above in mind when thinking about your future.

Check out more articles related to everyday health issues and general well-being.

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“Is My Addiction Serious?” 5 Signs You May Need Rehab Treatment


“Is My Addiction Serious?” 5 Signs You May Need Rehab Treatment

In 2014, over 20 million adults struggled with addiction in the United States.

Surely, at some point, many of them have asked, “Is my addiction serious enough to get help?”

If you’re wondering the same question, let’s explore 5 questions to ask to see if your addiction warrants professional treatment.

Addiction happens when the brain is hijacked and becomes addicted to certain substances like alcohol or other drugs. As people continue to use, it becomes more difficult to stop.

The addiction can be difficult to overcome the longer the person continues to use the substance.

Here are 5 questions to ask yourself if you think your addiction may be out of control. Never be afraid to ask for help.

1. Family and Friends Show Concern

Your friends and family are the closest people in your life who see you and know the true you. If they’ve expressed concern over your using drugs or noticed changes in your behaviors, it’s best to consult them and listen to their thoughts. It’s important to remember that addiction affects not only you but all those closest to you as well.

Friends and family are usually the ones who stage an intervention. If they’ve shown true concern about you, it may be time to start looking for help.

2. You Have Withdrawal Symptoms

After using the substance, you may feel withdrawal symptoms. They can include:

  • nausea
  • headaches
  • irritability
  • shaking
  • sweating
  • confusion
  • cramping

This is not an exhaustive list as withdrawal symptoms can vary from person to person and the drug involved.

3. You’ve Found It Challenging to Stop Using the Drug

A large indicator that you may have a severe addiction is desiring to stop and even trying to quit, but being unable to. This shows that your body is already addicted to the drug, making it extremely difficult to stop on your own.

4. You’re Hiding the Use from Others

Would you be comfortable being upfront about what you’ve been doing or who you’ve been with? If not, then you’re hiding the fact that you may have a problem. People who have nothing to hide would not lie to others about their whereabouts or activities.

If you are hiding our use from others, there are many places you need to check out. This site provides fantastic information regarding this.

5. Physical and Behavioral Changes

Addiction has a way of changing your behavior and even physical signs.

Physical symptoms can include:

  • weight loss or weight gain
  • bloodshot eyes
  • bloody noses
  • bad breath
  • appearing fatigued
  • lack of proper hygiene

Behavioral changes can include:

  • loss of interests or other activities
  • loss of a job or expelled from school
  • difficulty doing daily tasks like cooking or driving
  • participate in risky behaviors
  • lying
  • isolation

There are other behavioral changes associated with addiction, and they depend on the situation and the type of substance abuse

Are You Ready to Get Help?

If you’re thinking, “My addiction is serious”, there’s plenty of ways to begin the journey to sobriety. The sooner you acknowledge that you need help, the sooner the healing can begin. There’s always hope!

Looking for advice on content strategy and digital marketing? Our professionals can help! Visit our page to learn more.

Health

5 Unique and Healthy Ways to Break a Smoking Addiction

5 Unique and Healthy Ways to Break a Smoking Addiction


5 Unique and Healthy Ways to Break a Smoking Addiction

You may smoke, but that doesn’t mean that you’re happy to be a smoker. Smoking addiction affects a lot of people and many wish that they could drop the habit altogether.

According to a survey from the American Cancer Society, 70% of the participants want to stop smoking. Giving up smoking can be one of the most challenging things you do, but that doesn’t mean that it’s impossible.

Ending Smoking Addiction

If you want to stop smoking, there are a variety of things you can do to help get rid of your habit. People have used mental tricks, products, and even medical help to stop their habit.

Are you ready to stop smoking? Any of these five methods could help you finally quit for good.

Delay

Are you close to giving in to your tobacco craving? Instead of taking a smoke break right now, just wait a few minutes. It may sound crazy, but those few minutes can help do a lot to stop a craving in its tracks.

Spend 5-10 minutes doing something else. Check your e-mail, look at social media, or basically do anything to get your mind off of your craving. After awhile it should pass and you won’t feel the need to smoke anymore.

Deal With Stress Constructively

Smoking and stress almost work together hand-in-hand. A study from the Pew Research Center shows that a lot of smokers struggle with stress, and those stressful feelings cause them to light up more cigarettes.

If you’re a stress smoker you need to find a different way to handle feelings of stress. Some people find that using a stress ball helps them. Others have used yoga or meditation to center themselves and fight off cravings.

Find New Routines

Some people like to end their lunch breaks with a cigarette or two, and others need a smoke before they go to sleep. Smokers that fall into routines can have trouble quitting because it became a part of their daily schedule.

Finding a new routine can help you break your smoking habit. Replace your scheduled smoke breaks with new routines that are satisfying.

Instead of having that post-lunch smoke, take a quick walk to energize yourself for the next half of the day. Consider having a snack instead of a smoke before bed.

Think About Natural Remedies

If you want to quit smoking, mother nature may be able to help.There are a variety of herbs and other natural things that can help break your smoking addiction.

Cream of tartar health benefits have been touted by naturalists for years, and it can also help you quit smoking. Ginseng has also been known to help combat cravings.

Reward Yourself

Quitting smoking is tough, and even just slowing down your habit is a cause for celebration. Quitting comes with a variety of health benefits, but small rewards along the way can make it easier to end your smoking addiction.

If you just went your first day without smoking, treat yourself to a fancy coffee in the morning. If you’ve gone weeks or months without a cigarette, it may be time to buy the new pair of shoes you’ve been eyeing.

Your Turn

What helped you end your smoking addiction? Did we miss your favorite method to break habits? Tell our readers about it in the comments!