Most US teens feel peaceful without smartphones, study finds

A Pew Center Research study found that most teenagers feel peaceful when they do not have their smartphones. 

Researchers surveyed 1,453 U.S. teenagers ages 13 to 17 and their parents from September to October 2023. Researchers said they wanted to see how teenagers are emotionally tied to their devices, the impact the devices have and the challenge parents have with raising children in the digital age. 

Results showed 72% of teens said they often or sometimes feel peaceful when they don’t have their smartphone, while 44% said it makes them feel anxious.

In addition, 69% of teens said the devices make it easier for them to pursue extracurricular activities. Fewer (30%) said it helps them learn good social skills.

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In regard to parents, half of parents said they have looked through the child's phone. Furthermore, about four-in-ten parents and teens said they have regularly argued with one another about time spent on their phone.

Also, nearly half of teens (46%) said their parent is at least sometimes distracted by their phone when they’re trying to talk to them. 

A 2023 study by Common Sense Media, a nonprofit group in San Francisco, California, researched phone usage among a diverse group of 203 kids aged 11 to 17 — and the results were startling, experts said.

The researchers found that smartphones have become a "constant companion" for young people, according to a news release, although results varied.

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Kids spent a median of 4.5 hours per day on their phones, with the maximum amount of time reaching 16 hours, according to the study. Most teens check their phones frequently, ranging from two to 498 times per day. Adolescents were more likely to check their phones over 100 times a day, the study found.

Licensed clinical social worker Jennifer Kelman in Boca Raton, Florida — who provides expert advice on the Justanswer platform and was not involved in the study — shared some of the negative repercussions of kids spending large amounts of time on their phones.

"They lose the ability to have face-to-face interactions, and to converse and connect with others," she said in an interview with Fox News Digital.

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"The phones and all the apps aren’t real-life interactions, and there is beauty in connecting with others face-to-face that is lost," Kelman went on.

FOX News contributed to this report. This story was reported from Los Angeles.