The following is excerpted from an online article posted by DailyMail.
Today’s teenagers are lonelier at school than those 20 years ago because smartphones stop them from talking with friends, a new study says.
Researchers from the University of San Diego found the proportion of 15 and 16-year-olds in the UK feeling alienated among peers has tripled since 2000 to 33 percent – one in three.
They said the rise coincides with the widespread use of smartphones and social media by this age group.
The study found that in 2000, 10 percent of 15 and 16-year-olds in the UK had high levels of school loneliness. In 2003, levels remained virtually unchanged at 9 percent. But by 2012, the figure had increased to 15 percent, soaring to 25 percent in 2015 and 33 percent in 2018.
The study, published in the Journal of Adolescence, said there was a strong correlation between smartphones and loneliness, although definite blame cannot be proven.
The researchers said adolescent wellbeing “began to decline in 2012, in conjunction with the rise of smartphone access.”