Prevalence of Mobile Phone Dependence in Secondary School Adolescents VC06-VC09
Dr. Shaunak A. Ajinkya,
Professor, Department of Psychiatry, MGM Medical College and Hospital, Sector 1, Kamothe,
Navi Mumbai-410209, Maharashtra, India.
Introduction: Mobile phones have become an essential part of modern human life. They have many attributes which makes them very attractive to both young and old. There has been an increasing trend of use of mobile phones among students. Data has now started emerging with respect to the negative physical and psychological consequences of excessive use of mobile phones. New research has shown excessive use of mobile phones leading to development of symptoms suggestive of dependence syndrome.
Aim: To study the prevalence of Mobile Phone Dependence (MPD) in secondary school adolescents. S etting and Design: Cross-sectional, observational study conducted in secondary section of English-medium schools at Navi Mumbai (India).
Materials and Methods: Four hundred and fifteen students studying in 8th, 9th and 10th standards of schools at Navi Mumbai (India) having personal mobile phone were randomly included in the study. Participant information like age, gender, family type, phone type, duration of use per day and years of mobile phone usage was recorded. They were administered an MPD questionnaire based upon the dependence syndrome criteria as per ICD-10. According to their responses, participants who fulfilled three or more of the diagnostic criteria were rated as having MPD.
Results: Mobile Phone Dependence was found in 31.33% of sample students. It was significantly associated with gender (p=0.003, OR=1.91, CI: 1.23-2.99), family type (p=0.0012), type of mobile phone used (p<0.001, OR=2.6, CI: 1.63-4.35), average time per day spent using mobile phone (p<0.001) and years of mobile phone usage (p =0.004, OR=2.4, CI: 1.31-4.55).
Conclusion: Mobile Phone Dependence has been found to be an emerging public health problem. There is need to recognize and identify early the growing trends and negative consequences of inappropriate mobile phone use in young users so as to generate awareness, and plan educational and treatment interventions, if need be, so as to prevent a major public health concern.