Nomophobia, defined as smartphone separation anxiety,  is when people perceive smartphones as part of their extended selves.

Counselors, lawyers and therapists are aggressively pushing it as the fad diagnosis of 2017, but what behaviors and descriptors can help identify people with high nomophobia ? A new paper compares how people considered to have high and low nomophobic tendencies perceive and value their smartphones.

In the pay-to-publish journal Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, Seunghee Han and Jang Hyun Kim, PhD, Sungkyunkwan University, Seoul, Republic of Korea and Ki Joon Kim, PhD, City University of Hong Kong, Kowloon, created a model that they say has identified a link between factors such as personal memories and user's greater attachment to their smart phones, leading to nomophobia and a tendency to phone proximity-seeking behavior.

Source: American Council on Science and Health, Nomophobia - How You Can Claim Your Cell Phone Is Like A Service Dog

They hope this becomes mainstream, and therefore covered under insurance, but the National Institute of Mental Health started cracking down on the increased number of minor diagnoses found in DSM-5 and dismissed it as a diagnosis tool, calling it simply a glossary.

"Nomophobia, fear of missing out (FoMo), and fear of being offline (FoBo)--all anxieties born of our new high-tech lifestyles-may be treated similarly to other more traditional phobias. Exposure therapy, in this case turning off technology periodically, can teach individuals to reduce anxiety and become comfortable with periods of disconnectedness," says Editor-in-Chief Brenda K. Wiederhold, PhD, MBA, BCB, BCN, Interactive Media Institute, San Diego, California and Virtual Reality Medical Institute, Brussels, Belgium.