Almost a quarter of young people are so dependent on their smartphones that it becomes like an addiction, research by psychiatrists concludes.
The study, from King’s College London, says such addictive behaviour means that people become “panicky” or “upset” if they are denied constant access.
The youngsters also cannot control the amount of time they spend on the phone.
The study warns that such addictions have “serious consequences” for mental health.
The research, published in BMC Psychiatry, analysed 41 studies involving 42,000 young people in an investigation into “problematic smartphone usage”.
The study found 23% had behaviour that was consistent with an addiction – such as anxiety over not being able to use their phone, not being able to moderate the time spent and using mobiles so much that it was detrimental to other activities.
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