You’re walking down the hall, get a text message, reach in your pocket, and discover that there is no text. Has this happened to you?
For the past decade, “Buzz in your pants” disease has been a growing epidemic among 15-29 year-olds who (shocker) get a lot of texts. In fact, some doctors are beginning to classify it as a disease.
The Atlantic wrote a story about the buzzing epidemic:
They happen pretty often. The survey of undergrads and medical professionals agree: about ten percent experience phantom vibrations every day. 88 percent of the doctors, specifically, felt vibrations between a weekly and monthly basis.
If you react strongly and emotionally to texts, you’re more likely to experience phantom vibrations. Droulin’s study found that a strong emotional reaction predicted how bothersome one finds phantom vibrations. Emotional reactions to texts have been researched before: in a 2008 study of Japanese high school students, it was found to be a key factor in text message dependence.
Phantom Vibrations. Sounds hot.
What they’re saying, essentially, is that you are getting imaginary text messages, and it might be a strong indicator that you are addicted to text messaging. But it gets more ridiculous. Evidently, the strongest corollary to “Buzz in your pants” disease is neuroticism. People who are neurotic get a TON of fake text messages.
According to the Wikipedia page on Neuroticism…
Individuals who score high on neuroticism are more likely than the average to experience such feelings as anxiety, anger, envy, guilt, and depressed mood. They respond more poorly to environmental stress, and are more likely to interpret ordinary situations as threatening, and minor frustrations as hopelessly difficult.
And now to add to that list, false texts.
This is insane
Please, give me a break. Just because you felt a text message that wasn’t there doesn’t make you neurotic. And you don’t have a disease.
From a psychological perspective, people have always responded emotionally to others (“she loves me…she loves me not…”). This is nothing new. But since texting is a big part of relationships, it’s good to think about the effect that this is having on us.
That buzz in your pants might just be a sign of emotional instability.
So what do you think, are phantom texts a disease?