Indian Journal of Psychological Medicine
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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2019  |  Volume : 41  |  Issue : 6  |  Page : 541-548

Nomophobia: A mixed-methods study on prevalence, associated factors, and perception among college students in Puducherry, India


1 Department of Preventive and Social Medicine, Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research, Puducherry, India
2 Department of Psychiatry, Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research, Puducherry, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. J Venkatachalam
Department of Preventive and Social Medicine, Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research, Puducherry
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/IJPSYM.IJPSYM_130_19

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Background: As more people are utilizing smartphones, nomophobia is also on the rise. Several Indian studies have revealed nomophobia among young adults. The severity of nomophobia and related behaviors is underrated and often go unnoticed in India. Methods: The sociodemographic characteristics, smartphone usage pattern, and perceived ill-health related to smartphone usage of the participants were obtained using a semistructured questionnaire. Twenty-item Nomophobia questionnaire was used to assess nomophobia. In-depth interviews were conducted among students with moderate and severe nomophobia scores. Results: Among the 774 participants, 23.5% had severe nomophobia scores. Older age, male gender, duration and frequency of smartphone usage, use for social networking, checking without reason, and checking smartphone after waking up in the morning were significantly associated with nomophobia. The in-depth interview showed attributes of addiction among the students, like dependency and compulsive behavior. Students also experienced anxiety and frustration when they had to part with their smartphones. Conclusion: A sizable minority of the students had signs of severe nomophobia, distinct patterns of usage, and misperceptions regarding health and their usage pattern.


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