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      Smartphone use can be addictive? A case report

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          Background and aims

          The use of mobile phones has become an integral part of everyday life. Young people in particular can be observed using their smartphones constantly, and they not only make or receive calls but also use different applications or just tap touch screens for several minutes at a time. The opportunities provided by smartphones are attractive, and the cumulative time of using smartphones per day is very high for many people, so the question arises whether we can really speak of a mobile phone addiction? In this study, our aim is to describe and analyze a possible case of smartphone addiction.


          We present the case of Anette, an 18-year-old girl, who is characterized by excessive smartphone use. We compare Anette’s symptoms to Griffiths’s conception of technological addictions, Goodman’s criteria of behavioral addictions, and the DSM-5 criteria of gambling disorder.


          Anette fulfills almost all the criteria of Griffiths, Goodman, and the DSM-5, and she spends about 8 hr in a day using her smartphone.


          Anette’s excessive mobile phone usage includes different types of addictive behaviors: making selfies and editing them for hours, watching movies, surfing on the Internet, and, above all, visiting social sites. The cumulative time of these activities results in a very high level of smartphone use. The device in her case is a tool that provides these activities for her whole day. Most of Anette’s activities with a mobile phone are connected to community sites, so her main problem may be a community site addiction.

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          Most cited references 17

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          Psychological predictors of problem mobile phone use.

          Mobile phone use is banned or illegal under certain circumstances and in some jurisdictions. Nevertheless, some people still use their mobile phones despite recognized safety concerns, legislation, and informal bans. Drawing potential predictors from the addiction literature, this study sought to predict usage and, specifically, problematic mobile phone use from extraversion, self-esteem, neuroticism, gender, and age. To measure problem use, the Mobile Phone Problem Use Scale was devised and validated as a reliable self-report instrument, against the Addiction Potential Scale and overall mobile phone usage levels. Problem use was a function of age, extraversion, and low self-esteem, but not neuroticism. As extraverts are more likely to take risks, and young drivers feature prominently in automobile accidents, this study supports community concerns about mobile phone use, and identifies groups that should be targeted in any intervention campaigns.
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            The role of impulsivity in actual and problematic use of the mobile phone

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              Smartphone use and smartphone addiction among young people in Switzerland

               Severin Haug (corresponding) ,  Raquel Paz Castro,  Min Kwon (2015)
              Smartphone addiction, its association with smartphone use, and its predictors have not yet been studied in a European sample. This study investigated indicators of smartphone use, smartphone addiction, and their associations with demographic and health behaviour-related variables in young people. A convenience sample of 1,519 students from 127 Swiss vocational school classes participated in a survey assessing demographic and health-related characteristics as well as indicators of smartphone use and addiction. Smartphone addiction was assessed using a short version of the Smartphone Addiction Scale for Adolescents (SAS-SV). Logistic regression analyses were conducted to investigate demographic and health-related predictors of smartphone addiction. Smartphone addiction occurred in 256 (16.9%) of the 1,519 students. Longer duration of smartphone use on a typical day, a shorter time period until first smartphone use in the morning, and reporting that social networking was the most personally relevant smartphone function were associated with smartphone addiction. Smartphone addiction was more prevalent in younger adolescents (15–16 years) compared with young adults (19 years and older), students with both parents born outside Switzerland, persons reporting lower physical activity, and those reporting higher stress. Alcohol and tobacco consumption were unrelated to smartphone addiction. Different indicators of smartphone use are associated with smartphone addiction and subgroups of young people have a higher prevalence of smartphone addiction. The study provides the first insights into smartphone use, smartphone addiction, and predictors of smartphone addiction in young people from a European country, which should be extended in further studies.

                Author and article information

                Journal of Behavioral Addictions
                J Behav Addict
                Akadémiai Kiadó (Budapest )
                07 September 2016
                September 2016
                : 5
                : 3
                : 548-552
                [ 1 ]Department of Personality and Clinical Psychology, Institute of Psychology, University of Debrecen , Debrecen, Hungary
                [ 2 ]Faculty of Education and Psychology, ELTE , Budapest, Hungary
                [ 3 ]Institute of Psychology, University of Debrecen , Debrecen, Hungary
                Author notes
                [* ]Corresponding author: Dr. Attila Körmendi; Department of Personality and Clinical Psychology, Institute of Psychology, University of Debrecen, Hajdú-Bihar, Debrecen 4032, Hungary; Phone: +36 20 2031710; E-mail: kormendi.ati@
                © 2016 The Author(s)

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium for non-commercial purposes, provided the original author and source are credited.

                Page count
                Figures: 0, Tables: 1, Equations: 0, References: 21, Pages: 5
                Funding sources: This research was supported by the European Union and the State of Hungary, co-financed by the European Social Fund in the framework of TÁMOP 4.2.4. A/2-11-1-2012-0001 “National Excellence Program.”
                Case Report


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