June 10, 2023

A new study conducted by the Georgia Institute of Technology has found that people with attachment anxiety to their phones experience phantom vibration syndrome or “ringxiety.”

It is a cultural phenomenon to describe the phantom feeling of a phone call or text while the phone is nearby or in a pocket.

People might believe they feel or hear their phone ring since many people are used to the vibration, but the vibrating phone sensation is not real.

Ronald Vasquez, junior communication studies major, said he always has his phone on him and has separation anxiety when he does not.

“A lot of my life depends on my phone and I feel like I have developed a sort of anxiety that my phone is constantly vibrating,” Vasquez said. “In my head, I think my phone is ringing but it can be in my car. I will hear a buzz and automatically think my phone is vibrating.”

The Georgia Tech study estimated 90 percent of people experience this sort of issue to some extent. The study also showed lack of sleep can make the problem worse and increase the likelihood of symptom development.

Those who average the recommended eight hours of sleep per night are not as susceptible to the phantom ringing condition as others who are somewhat sleep deprived.

Alyssa Wilson, sophomore kinesiology major, said she believes she deals with “ringxiety” sometimes, but not all the time.

“I feel this sort of problem when I am expecting a call or text, especially in class,” Wilson said. “On occasion, I will think that it maybe is ringing so I check it even though it didn’t vibrate.”

Leave a Reply