Every day, on my way to the lab I carry with me a bag, which is, in fact, the same size with Santa’s bags, with everything in it or in all cases, everything I need, or I think I will need at work. There is no single day in my life that I won’t spend at least 5 min searching for my Samsung smartphone inside that bag. Sometimes this happens more than once during the day and while searching there is always a weird feeling of anxiety that somehow, I have lost it or forgot it somewhere. The funny thing is that in a lifetime I have lost my smartphone once when I totally forgot it on a cab on my way to my partner’s pharmacy. That certain time, something exceptionally good had happened to me and I was so happy I didn’t bother to look where my phone was for many hours. Luckily, the taxi driver called my mom and told her he had my Samsung and as you can imagine when my mom informed about it, I got totally nervous and all the earlier happy feelings of mine had gone with the wind!
Let’s face it! We all have been there! Smartphones have become the perfect multi-task tool in our everyday lives. We use it to communicate, to navigate, to find answers to a question, to learn about stuff or even to work and this kind of dependence has created particularly important psychological consequences.
According to neuroscientists and psychologists, all these feelings of anxiety or distress that we experience when not having our smartphone and the degree to which we depend on it to fulfill an important need or complete basic tasks has become the 21st-century mental disease that many people suffer from and it is called nomophobia. The term nomophobia derives from the abbreviation of the English words No Mobile Phone Phobia and it is an officially listed modern mental illness.