Saturday, November 14, 2015

Do You Have Ringxiety?

There is something that I just learned this week that has apparently been happening since the last decade.

Something called "ringxiety."  Do you have it?  Don't know if you have it? Don't know what it is?  Neither did I until two days ago.  You may have had it without knowing it or even knowing what it is.

For the last week or so I kept thinking my cell phone was ringing or vibrating (I tend to keep it on vibrate most of the time), but it actually wasn't doing so at all.  What I actually heard was noises coming from my mobile home park neighbors's houses, yards or cars, and leaves rustling in the wind,  among other noises. Why I thought this was phone ringing I didn't know, as none of my ringtones sound like these things! I thought I must be going crazy along with my frequent tendencies of anxiety and depression (been on Prozac for three months now).  But then I wondered if this happens to others. As I went to my psychiatrist appointment this past Thursday, I brought this up and was told that this is what is called "ringxiety." My psychiatrist even said he does it with his phone.  I'd never heard that word until then, so naturally I Googled it at home later that day.  I got the following from Wikipedia:

Phantom vibration syndrome or phantom ringing is the perception that one's mobile phone isvibrating or ringing, when in fact the telephone is not doing so. Other terms for this concept includeringxiety (a portmanteau of ring and anxiety) and fauxcellarm (a play on "false alarm").[1]
Phantom ringing may be experienced while taking a shower, watching television, or using a noisy device. Humans are particularly sensitive to auditory tones between 1,000 and 6,000 hertz, and basic mobile phone ringers often fall within this range.[1] Phantom vibrations develop after carrying a cell phone set to use vibrating alerts.[2] Researcher Michelle Drouin found that almost 9 of 10 undergraduates at her college experienced phantom vibrations.[3] .....

Further searching lead me to various links dated as far back as 2006 on this subject.  Even though I was never aware of it till now, it shouldn't come as surprise that it's been happening that long, since cell phones have become a part of life for everyone.  It appears to be one of those things you may have known about but didn't know what it is called.  Or you never knew about it until recently as I did.  

Along with Phantom Vibration Syndrome, "ringxiety" and "fauxcellarm," another term I learned for this sort of occurrence is hypovibrochondria:

Again, I only just found this out this past week, but it's been happening for sometime now. It's possible, even likely, that if you haven't had it now, you may have it someday as cell phones increasingly become part of everyone's everyday life.  But now you know you're not alone.  

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