Teens who are glued to their smartphones and other devices are unhappier than those who spend less time on digital media, new research finds.
The study can't prove cause-and-effect, so it's not clear if teens are made unhappy by spending a long time on their devices, or whether less happy teens are simply drawn to using them more.
But whatever the relationship, "the key to digital media use and happiness is limited use," believes study author Jean Twenge.
"Aim to spend no more than two hours a day on digital media, and try to increase the amount of time you spend seeing friends face-to-face and exercising -- two activities reliably linked to greater happiness," said Twenge. She's professor of psychology at San Diego State University.
One psychologist agreed that links between teen smartphone use and unhappiness are getting stronger.
"Although the findings from this study need to be replicated by other researchers, it's concerning that teens in recent years seem to be less well psychologically adjusted, and that smartphones may in part be responsible," said Dr. Andrew Adesman. He directs developmental and behavioral pediatrics at Cohen Children's Medical Center in New Hyde Park, N.Y.
A few weeks ago, I attempted to unplug from my phone to some extend. I found it to be relaxing to not be constantly surfing through the website. Maybe we could all use a little "Unplug" therapy? Let me know what you think, tweet me @JoshNagy981.