Remember when your first born child took her first steps? Or the last conversation you had with your parents? You don’t, eh? You’re likely one of the 41% of Americans who report spending excessive time on their smartphone.
While missing the occasional life milestone is nary a recommended practice, a group of academics developed a rubric to diagnose smartphone addiction and — an even more dire diagnosis — impairment.
According to this rubric, 32% of Americans are addicted to their smartphones, meaning they can’t overcome the urge to text, share, tweet, search or swipe. If you’re in a relationship with someone in this group you’re a permanent third-wheeler.
But it could be worse. You could be in a relationship with the 25% of Americans who are categorized as impaired by their smartphone use. These folks aren’t just distracted; their physical and/or psychological well-being is at risk.
Recognizing the risk of death-by-smartphone addiction, more than two-thirds of addicted and impaired smartphone users have tried to reduce their screen time in the past 3 months, but this whole virtual new normal couldn’t have helped.