Why Do We Falsely Think Our Phone Is Vibrating or Ringing

Geo Beats
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A study of medical student interns in Taiwan found that up to 95 percent of subjects experienced a phantom cell phone vibration, and up to 84 percent heard their phone ring when it really hadn’t.

Have you ever felt your phone vibrate or heard it ring and pulled it out only to find that it hadn’t actually gone off?

A study of medical student interns in Taiwan found that up to 95 percent of subjects experienced a phantom cell phone vibration, and up to 84 percent heard their phone ring when it really hadn’t.

This sensory tomfoolery is called phantom vibration or phantom ringing syndrome, and it’s caused by our brain’s reward system.

True, your phone is either ringing or it isn’t and staring at it clearly won’t change that; however, checking for activity does change how we feel.

There are the negative feelings associated with missing messages and calls, and positive emotional rewards for catching them.

If someone checks their phone because they thought it rang or vibrated and find they haven’t missed anything, they still feel better than if they’d really lost a chance to pick-up.

Stress can also contribute to how often we hear and feel signals that aren’t there.

The research revealed that for the students in the thick of their internship experience, the phantom occurrences were more frequent.

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