It's weird being without a smartphone. It feels as if something is missing. That anxious feeling has a name — nomophobia — (no-mobile-phone-phobia) and researchers have found a way to evaluate how severe a person's nomophobia really is.

Nomophobia is everywhere in industrialised nations. The Post Office commissioned YouGov, a research organisation, to look at anxieties suffered by mobile phone users. The study found that nearly 53 percent of mobile phone users in Britain tend to be anxious when they “lose their mobile phone, run out of battery or credit, or have no network coverage.”

The study found that about 58 percent of men and 47 percent of women suffer from the phobia, and an additional 9 percent feel stressed when their mobile phones are off. The study sampled 2,163 people. Fifty-five percent of those surveyed cited keeping in touch with friends or family as the main reason that they got anxious when they could not use their mobile phones.

Meditation can be used for its treatment in severe cases. Self help methods also help.

AIMAN SALAHUDDIN,

Karachi, August 17.