Late Night Cell Phone Usage a Problem for Some


Gable Thompson

The survey sent out to the Glenwood High School student body

Gable Thompson, Entertainment Editor

There has never been a more iconic power couple than a teenager and his or her smartphone. Teenagers seem like they are addicted to smartphones, and some parents have gone so far as to restrict teenager’s use of their devices.

While most students seem to be able to keep their screen usage in check, others are addicted. There were 59 students who reported that they spend 1-2 hours on their smartphones after 10 p.m while nine students reported that they spend nearly 5-6 hours in front of a screen after 10 p.m.

Recently, a survey was sent out to the student body about late night smartphone usage, specifically after 10 p.m. Of the 186 students who responded, 68 students said they usually spend 0-10 minutes on their phones after 10 p.m. On the other hand, 45 students said that they spend roughly thirty minutes on their phones after 10 p.m.

Students shared their varying opinions.

Phones and electronic devices should be used in moderation,” said junior Tanner Williams. “Of course they make everything easier, but in the long term, you have got to think about how it will affect you negatively.”

Some students admitted that they are on their phones too often. Freshman Joseph Jaworski has an app on his phone that tracks his screen time. According to that app, Jaworski spends an average of four hours on his phone per day.

Some Glenwood parents believe cell phone use is excessive. 

“We don’t do a good job of managing our screen time as parents either,” said freshman parent Jennifer Kirsch. “It sometimes feels completely addictive and is quite frankly uncomfortable if I leave my phone at home by accident. We need to be better examples and put limits on our technology. I also believe that it’s equally important to put phones down during family meals and gatherings. We as a society are going to have big problems communicating if we don’t start managing this better.”

A few parents have even gone so far as to restrict their children’s use of their phones. According to the results of the survey, 25 percent of respondents said that their parents tried to restrict their phone usage by turning off the wifi, taking away phones before bed, or with apps and devices designed to limit internet usage like the Disney Circle.

Disney Circle is a device designed to limit family’s screen time. It allows users to connect up to ten different devices and set a total combined limit for each device. For example, if a limit of two hours of wifi is set per day and someone in the family spends 90 minutes on their phone, the Circle will only allow 30 minutes of wifi shared among the family for the rest of the day.  

“My parents recently installed the ‘Circle’ into our household,” said sophomore Jack Marley. “It monitors and restricts internet usage for each member of our family. When I hit a certain daily limit of Internet usage, it redirects me to a page that says that I’ve reached my limit.”  

“I don’t think this system has particularly helped me though,” said Marley. “I can still use offline programs when my time expires each day, so I tend to just switch to those.”

But despite student’s general belief that people are on their phones too much, many students think that placing restrictions on screen time is not the answer. One student suggested that the best way to keep students off of their phones is for them to get involved in activities away from their phones.

“I think the biggest part of the problem is that most people have nowhere else they regularly turn to fill their time,” said Marley. “I believe that everyone should find at least one or two other hobbies that do not involve electronics that they try to balance with their screen time. It’s best if these hobbies allow you to socialize with others while participating.”

Senior Michelle Arnold is one of those students who is involved in numerous activities which naturally restricts her phone usage.

“Some people definitely spend too much time on their phone, especially on social media,” said Arnold.  “But I don’t think that it’s as big of a problem as it’s made out to be. Some phone use can be beneficial. I use my phone mostly just to listen to music, communicate with friends and family, and watch entertaining videos usually as a form of stress relief. Sometimes I feel like phones are just used as a scapegoat to explain away all the problems of our generation. I don’t use my phone as often as some people, and I don’t use any form of social media, but that hasn’t made my life any better than anyone else’s. And there’s no point in trying to restrict screen time for anyone other than little kids. It won’t work.”