Warning! Smartphone addiction may be a sign of depression

DECCAN CHRONICLE
Published Jul 20, 2015, 12:50 pm IST
Updated Mar 28, 2019, 11:53 am IST
Depressed subjects spent an average of 68 minutes per day on their phones
Representational image (Depression)
 Representational image (Depression)

Spending too much time fiddling with your smartphone may be just be the new indicator of depression, according to a recent study published in the Journal of Medical Internet Research. Northwestern University and Michigan State University researchers found they could identify people with depression just by tracking their mobile phone usage, with an 87 per cent accuracy rate.

A group of 40 people recruited from Craigslist used an app that monitored their location and phone usage (based on how much time the phone’s screen was on) for two weeks. They also completed a questionnaire that evaluated them to find symptoms of depression.

 

At the end of the two-week period, the researchers found that the data found from their phone usage and GPS were better indicators of a subject’s depression than a daily survey that asked the participants to just rate their sadness levels that day.

Depressed subjects spent an average of 68 minutes per day on their phones, while non-depressed individuals spent just about 17 minutes per day using their phones on an average. The research also showed that the depressed people spent time in fewer locations, and they were also found to be spending more time at home.

Source: www.mentalfloss.com

 

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