Archive How Phantom Vibrations Impact Teenagers’ Focus
How Phantom Vibrations Impact Teenagers' Focus

How to Get Rid of Phantom Vibration Syndrome‍



Table of contents:

    Phantom vibration syndrome, an increasingly prevalent phenomenon, is a situation where an individual believes their mobile device is vibrating or ringing when it’s not. This perceived sensation can be disturbing and confusing, and it’s a byproduct of our dependence on technology. This article explores the ins and outs of phantom vibration syndrome, its repercussions on teenagers’ focus, and how to combat it. So, if you have a child who wonders, “Why do I hear a phone vibrating in the house?” you might want to read this article to be able to help them get rid of phantom vibration syndrome.


    Recognizing the Signs of Phantom Vibration Syndrome

    As we explained earlier, phantom vibration syndrome manifests as a sensation that your mobile phone is vibrating or ringing when it’s not. This sensation can occur even when the device isn’t present.

    The symptoms of phantom vibration syndrome include:

    • Frequently reaching for your phone
    • Feeling vibrations in your pocket, bag, or wherever you usually keep your phone
    • Hearing your phone ring when it’s silent

    If you or your child are experiencing these symptoms, it might be an indication of phantom vibration syndrome.


    The Effects of Phantom Vibration Syndrome on Teenagers’ Focus

    The constant anticipation of a phone notification can be detrimental to a teenager’s focus and productivity. Every time a young person breaks their concentration to check their phone _real or imagined_ it takes considerable time to regain the previous level of productivity. This “switch-cost” can significantly disrupt a teenager’s study and work schedule, leading to decreased performance.


    Phantom Vibration Syndrome Causes

    The primary cause of phantom vibration syndrome is the habitual use of mobile technology, particularly smartphones. We’ve conditioned ourselves to respond immediately to every buzz or ring from our devices. This conditioning, coupled with the anxiety of potentially missing out on something important, can lead to the perception of phantom vibrations.

    Causes of phantom vibration syndrome include:

    • Habitual use of mobile technology
    • Anxiety of missing out on important notifications
    • Conditioning of the brain to respond to phone vibrations

    Technology’s Role: Phones, Social Media, and Notifications

    Undeniably, technology, especially mobile devices and social media, plays a significant role in the prevalence of phantom vibration syndrome. These platforms have made communication instantaneous, leading to an expectation of immediate responses. The increasing number of notifications from various apps only heightens this expectation.

    “In a lot of ways, adolescents are expected to respond to all of these notifications in a way that adults are not. That’s how they socialize and interact with the world. If they miss a text, miss a Snapchat or some other social notification, they’re out of the loop. It leads to heightened anxiety, which leads to increased attention to their phones.” – Brittany Barber Garcia, PhD


    Table showing what percentage of people check their phones or social media accounts every 15 minutes or less


    How to Stop Phantom Vibration Syndrome?

    One effective way to combat phantom vibration syndrome is to consciously reduce the time spent on your phone. Short hiatuses can help recondition your brain to not expect constant notifications. Over time, this can lessen the anxiety linked to “missing” something, and eventually, reduce the occurrence of phantom vibrations.

    To achieve this, you can encourage your child to do activities that don’t require a phone, such as doing sports, and make sure their phones are well out of reach. Also, encourage your child to be less dependent on phones in whatever activity they do. If they should study, have them put their phone in another room so that they can focus without interruption.

    Another technique is to make less important notifications, apps, or conversations silent on your phone. You don’t need to respond to all notifications immediately. We all receive tons of casual messages from friends and family, not to mention advertisements. Teach your child how to silence unimportant notifications and only let crucial ones ring out.

    One more strategy we can suggest is to encourage your child to practice doing tasks in clusters. That means when you’re in the middle of doing something, you shouldn’t stop to do a secondary task. Mastering this skill not only enables your child to overcome phantom vibration syndrome but also helps them augment their productivity in whatever activity they do.

    Last but not least, be a role model. If you can’t control your temptation to check your phone all the time, how can you expect your child to be otherwise? The strategies we offered you here can be helpful to you, too, if you as a parent have symptoms of phantom vibration syndrome.


    How Parental Controls Apps Can Help Combat Phantom Vibration Syndrome

    Parental control apps like Safes can be instrumental in helping your child avoid phantom vibration syndrome. By enabling you to monitor and manage your child’s device usage, Safes can help reduce the frequency of notifications, and consequently, lessen the occurrence of phantom vibrations.

    Besides, Safes also offers other benefits like content filtering, controlling access to apps, and tracking online activities, providing a comprehensive solution to safeguard your child in the digital sphere.


    Safes is available on all phones, tablets, and computers. It’s also compatible with major platforms such as Android, iOS, Windows, and Mac, which enables you to monitor and manage your child’s digital environment without needing to install multiple parental control apps.

    Download Safes from Google Play or App Store, and use the following links to learn how to put parental controls on different devices and platforms using Safes:


    Conclusion: Phantom Vibration Syndrome and Anxiety

    While phantom vibration syndrome may seem harmless, it is a clear indication of our increasing dependency and anxiety related to technology. It’s crucial to recognize and address this issue, especially among teenagers, to prevent it from hampering their productivity and focus. By employing strategies like controlled device usage and using parental control apps like Safes, we can help our children navigate the digital world healthily and responsibly.

    “Take a short walk in nature or just go outside. Do a short mindful meditation session. Exercise. Listen to music. Sing. Practice a foreign language. Read a jokes book. Talk to someone in person or on the phone. About every 90 minutes to two hours, do something for 10 minutes away from technology, and your anxiety levels should decrease.” – Larry D. Rosen, PhD



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    Download Safes Kids for Chrombook

    1. Install the Safes Kids app on your Chromebook from Google Play. 
    2. Pair Safes Kids with parent app. Follow the instructions in the app to pair your child’s device with your parent device.  
    3. Add the Safe Kids Chrome extension. Open Chrome and go to the Chrome Web Store. 
    4. Navigate to the Manage extensions page. Click the three dots in the top right corner of Chrome and select “Extensions”>”Manage Extensions”>”Details”
    5. Turn on “Allow in incognito mode” This will allow the Safe Kids extension to work in incognito mode, which is important if your child uses incognito mode to try to bypass the parental controls.
    6. Select Safes extension and follow on-screen instruction

    Download Safes Kids for Android

    Download the Android Kid’s app directly to get the full features!

    Download Safes Kids App on Play Store

    Download Safes Kids App on Play Store

    Safe Kids is available on the Google Play Store, but if you download it directly from our website, you will get access to Call and SMS monitoring feature, You can monitor the phone calls of your child’s device, as well as the contacts and messages they have sent and received, including those containing inappropriate content.