For many people, the smartphone has become their constant companion. That's why it's not easy for most people to part with it – and can even be harmful. This emerges from a new study on the subject of digital detox.

Anyone who owns a smartphone probably carries it around pretty much all the time. It's now so easy to quickly search for the nearest tram or an open supermarket around the corner on the small computer in your pocket.

Screen time – the time you spend on your smartphone – can quickly get out of hand. But digital detox is not the best solution here, according to a study by the University of Bochum.

Digital detox is not a panacea

Do you spend too much time on your cell phone and therefore want to detoxify digitally for a certain amount of time and do without your smartphone completely? This could even be harmful, as researchers at the University of Bochum found in a study.

Because that could have the same effect as a diet. Due to the so-called yo-yo effect, the time in the digital detox would have exactly the opposite effect.

In addition, completely avoiding the phone could also cause stress and the fear of missing something. It is therefore more important to use your smartphone more consciously and to organize your time better.

This way you can keep your screen time under control in the long term

So if you want to reduce your total screen time, it's probably of little use to you to completely do without your smartphone. According to the study results, it is better to reduce your daily cell phone use over several weeks.

It's enough to spend an hour less on your cell phone every day. Because this one hour has the same positive effect as digital detox – but is more lasting.

Even four months after the end of the study, the test subjects used their phones 45 minutes less per day than before the study. They were also more active and less likely to feel fear.

The study by researchers at the University of Bochum even had an impact on smoking behavior. The participants not only reduced their screen time, but also smoked one or two fewer cigarettes per day.

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