Cell phone addiction is a serious problem

Cell Phones occupy a huge portion of everyone's life.

Cameron Adamczyk

Cell Phones occupy a huge portion of everyone's life.

People are often blinded to addiction. Most people don’t even know if or when they have an addiction. Sometimes addictions can appear harmless or irrational. Addictions are dramatized through television shows that show people eating coins or sniffing cats.

But this generation of students have an addiction to something that fits under all of those brackets. It can appear silly and it is often joked about by the media, students today face a serious addiction to their cell phones.

Cell phones have taken over everyone’s life. The minicomputer has become a necessity; They are used to find where to go, decide where to go eat, and to play Angry Birds and other such games. They have thousands of functions that have streamlined hundreds of processes and shrunk the globe.

For adults, this change has been a progressive change. Older people lived in a world that required looking at maps to find where to go, and they communicated through landline phones. People went on dates with people they met in real life.

For younger people, the world has always been this easy. There are kids as young as 12 becoming internet celebrities. Kids have been texting each other since as early as 5th grade, and apps like Tinder allow millennials to find their soulmates without ever speaking an actual word to them.

There are two sides to that coin. On one hand, this new technological generation will shape an impressive technological future. They will grasp broader ideas and transform traditional practices.

The other side to that coin is the dangerous side. This generation of people does not know how to live without a phone. According to Statistic Brain, 29 percent of people wake up and immediately look at their phones. From the start of the day, almost a third of the population grabs their phone.

That statistic is indicative of the broader problem with the convenience and dependence of cell phones. From our first waking second we feel inclined to look at them. Addiction of any kind is defined as a persistent, compulsive dependence on a behavior or substance. Looking at your cell phone every day you when you wake up is a compulsion. It is a dependence.

Addiction of any kind is scary. The common addiction is thought of as a drug or alcohol addiction, but an addiction to cell phones can be just as serious.

The immediate connection for phone addiction is using your phone while driving. According to a study done by AT&T, 70 percent of people use their phones while driving. There are even more shocking statistics that are broken down in that study about specific functions that are used, but the big takeaway is that cell phone use while driving has evolved past just texting.

The New York Times found that people using their cell phone while driving were four times more likely to get into an accident. In 2011 (most recent data), ten people in Georgia died from a cell phone related crash, and with usage rate increasing, that number is likely much higher.

In a poll that surveyed high school students around Forsyth County, over 85 percent of them admitted to using their phone while driving at least once a week. The cell phone addiction among people all around us puts our lives at risk.

The addiction not only affects driving, but it also affects daily function. They can lead to lower grades in classes. They can lead to an unhealthy obsession with social media. They can lead to a dependence on the cell phone that makes it almost impossible to live without it.

Being aware of the problem is a great first step in addressing the issues associated, but fixing the problem is a long process that needs to be started immediately.