For many of us, checking our phones for the latest email and social media updates throughout the day has become second nature. But researchers have found that constantly checking your phone could be a sign of depression.
Scientists at Baylor University, Texas have discovered that those who relentlessly check their cell phones for updates may be trying to alter their mood.
As we becoming increasingly dependent on mobile technology to help us stay both organized and entertained, researchers believe that they’ve found a link between phone addiction and emotional instability.
"A person who is moody and temperamental may be more likely to be addicted to their cell phone than more stable individuals," the study leaders wrote in the journal Personality and Individual Difference.
"Much like a variety of substance addictions, cell phone addiction may be an attempt at mood repair. Incessant checking of emails, sending texts, tweeting, and surfing the web may act as pacifiers for the unstable individual distracting him or herself from the worries of the day and providing solace, albeit temporarily, from such concerns."
The study analysed detailed questionnaire answers from a group of 346 women between the ages of 19-24.
The study concluded that people with "attention impulsiveness," defined as people who struggled to focus on a single task at hand, also had a significant link with mobile phone addiction.
Perhaps surprisingly, researchers discovered that people with more introverted personalities were less likely to be addicted to technology and gadgets such as smartphones than those with more outgoing personalities.
"Those who express feelings of shyness and bashfulness may be less likely to become dependent on their cell phones than their more extroverted counterparts," the study reported.
While in today’s modern world it may be unrealistic to go without using a cell phone, there are apps available to detect usage and set daily limits to help detect addiction.