Members of the younger generation that are too dependent on their smartphones have a higher risk for depression and loneliness.
- It has been uncertain which comes first, dependence on smartphones, or signs of depression.
- Research found that dependence on smartphone predicts higher reports of depressive symptoms rather than the opposite.
"The main takeaway is that smartphone dependency directly predicts later depressive symptoms. There's an issue where people are entirely too reliant on the device, in terms of feeling anxious if they don't have it accessible, and they're using it to the detriment of their day-to-day life." - Matthew Lapierre, University of Arizona.
- Smartphone dependency should be distinguished from common smartphone use which can provide actual benefits.
"The research grows out of my concern that there is too much of a focus on general use of smartphones. Smartphones can be useful. They help us connect with others. We've really been trying to focus on this idea of dependency and problematic use of smartphones being the driver for these psychological outcomes. " - Matthew Lapierre, University of Arizona.