Compulsive texting can impact behavioral, academic, social, and emotional performance.
Teens in America send an average 167 text per day (up from 50-60 in 2009), making it the most common form of communication with others outside of school! Researchers found many of these texters demonstrate the same compulsive behaviors seen in gamblers, including the inability to cut back, sleep loss, and lying to cover up their habit. This small study showed a tendency to inferior academic performance among compulsive texters.
PositiveTip: Remind your teens that time spent texting is time not studying or doing homework.
Texting while driving, or even while walking, is an increasingly serious hazard to your health.
We're inseparable from our cell phones, but there's a time to disconnect: when you're in motion. Distracted driving accounts for 25% of all motor vehicle accidents in US. A majority of both teens and adults admit to texting while driving. Even walking and texting is causing more accidents. Watch this brilliant Volkswagen stunt ad and consider your cell phone use in the future.
PositiveTip: Use you cell phone when you're stationary. It's less dangerous.
Almost half of U.S. teens admit to texting while driving.
A national survey of U.S. teens 16 years or older revealed that 44.5% had texted while driving at least once in the previous month. When compared to teens who did not text when behind the wheel, texters were more likely to drink and drive, ride with a drinking driver, and fail to use a seatbelt. Because this study was based on self-reported data it may underestimate the prevalence of driving while texting.
PositiveTip: Parents, supervision of your teen drivers is probably the most effective prevention strategy to risky driving.
Distracted diving is almost the equivalent of driving drunk.
Drivers in the U.S. are more likely to be distracted by cell phones, texting or email than their European counterparts, according to a MMWR article. Almost 70% of U.S. respondents indicated they had talked on their cell phones while driving, while only about 20% of drivers in the U.K. reported the same.
PositiveTip: Put that smartphone out of reach (trunk/boot?) while driving!
Distracted driving is becoming a large problem on the highways.
A major medical journal has weighed in heavily on the dangers of texting and talking on the cell phone while driving. The author urges all physicians to educate their patients that distracted driving is roughly equivalent to driving drunk. All those who think they can drive without incident while distracted, including every teen driver, should watch a graphic British public service announcement about this issue.
PositiveTip: Pull over if you have to fool with your phone or text while driving. This simple step could save your life!
Texting while driving increases your risk of crashing by more than 23 times.
Research from the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute reports that texting while driving increases the driver’s risk of being involved in a car crash or an almost-accident by 23.2%. Just dialing a cell phone almost triples the risk of crashing. Pulling to the side of the road for calling or texting makes a lot of sense.
On January 26, 2010 the U.S. Department of Transportation issued regulations prohibiting bus or truck drivers from sending text messages while operating commercial vehicles. Those who choose to ignore these rules may be subject to a whopping fine of up to $2750.00. An increasing number of states are banning texting while driving as well. Remember the Texas bus driver who plowed into stopped traffic while texting? It was all caught on video!