Physiological Anxiety Responses with Cell Phone Separation and Subsequent Contact
Journal of Advanced Student Sciences (JASS)
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Past research has shown that people separated from their cell phones exhibit physiological responses related to anxiety. These responses include an increase in the release of stress hormones leading to an increase in heart rate, perspiration, and respiration rate. Because of the strong attachment young American adults have to their cell phones, the researchers hypothesized participants would show signs of anxiety when separated from their phones. To test this, twenty participants completed a word search once with their phone in their possession, and another when their phone was out of their reach. During the latter condition, an experimenter anonymously contacted the subject first by text and then by phone call. Heart rate, respiration rate, and galvanic skin response measurements were taken continuously throughout both conditions. The results obtained indicate that the only significant response supporting the researchers’ hypothesis was the skin response data. The data obtained regarding heart rate and respiration rate was not sufficient to prove that there was a measurable physiological response to being separated from one’s phone.