Are you suffering from FOMO – that is, Fear Of Missing Out? Research shows that a growing number of young people are, with worrying consequences for their sleep and schoolwork. Read the blog post to find out more.

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FOMO

posted 2 hours ago by Mr Braddock, Sixth Form teacher

Everybody knows how important it is for students to get a good night’s sleep every night. You aren’t able to do your best and keep up with all of your responsibilities unless you sleep well. I’m sure you already know that you should go to bed at a reasonable hour. Most experts agree that the optimum number of hours is eight, and this has been accepted as common sense for as long as I can remember. However, I was young once and I know that most of you get much less sleep than that – and in some cases it will be affecting your schoolwork.

I read an interesting article in a teachers’ magazine recently. They did a study of 848 students in Wales. Worryingly, the results showed that teenagers are facing a new problem. They may go to bed and get up at appropriate times but a growing number are waking up in the middle of the night, not to use the bathroom or have a snack but because of a new phenomenon: FOMO – fear of missing out!

According to the article, schoolchildren are suffering because of a growing trend to wake up during the night to check social media. Afraid of missing a comment or opportunity to take part in a chat, teenagers are waking at all times of the night, going online and getting involved. All this when they should be sound asleep.

Experts are worried about this growing trend and the report reveals some worrying statistics that I’d like to share with you:

  • 23% of 12 to 15-year-olds wake up nearly every night to use social media. Another 15% wake up at night once a week for the same reason.
  • One in three students are constantly tired and unable to function to their full capacity.
  • Students who use social media during the night are more likely to suffer from depression and anxiety.

So, I’d like to ask you to be responsible when it comes to social media. Be brave! Switch off your devices at night. The world won’t end and your social media will be waiting to greet you in the morning! I give you my word that you won't have missed anything important.

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Discussion

Do you think FOMO is common where you are?

Comments

Kostantinus's picture
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Kostantinus 1 March, 2021 - 08:18

I am not sure exactly about it, but I think, there is FOMO in some ways. A lot of boys like playing computer games, even it's late and they should go to bed, they still look at their devices all the night long. The result is they are sleepy during day time and, of course, don't pay attention during the classes at school. That phenomenon affects their future a lot.
I think pupils' parents should take away all devices from own children when it's time to go to bed. Only in this way poor kids can sleep peacefully and have a vital energy for a new day. We should remember that children are just children. Not all of them are behave conscious enough and know what is good or bad.

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hermione123's picture
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hermione123 16 February, 2021 - 11:03

Well, answering your question.
No, I never feel FOMO. But, it's common in my country. Most of my classmates feel FOMO, I guess.

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Jenny201's picture
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Jenny201 28 November, 2020 - 03:29

Yes, I think FOMO is common in my country. You can particularly see the problem is widespread during the pandemic time of COVID 19. The government won't let people out, they have to stay at home all the time. That literally gets boring. As a result, the thing everyone uses to connect with their friends and society is the phone. Social media help them forget about boring things. Just watching online or chatting with friends makes you not notice how many hours you spent. Especially young people, they always do not have good sleep because they wake up in the middle of the night to check social media. Therefore, I think this trouble needs to get rid of the daily routine. Everyone must know the harmful effects of that and fix this habit

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TheGreatApple's picture
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TheGreatApple 25 October, 2020 - 15:58

In my country, FOMO is an overlooked problem, that has to be dealt with. It massively reduces student effectivness and the ability to compete efficiently. Personally, I have never found that sleeping would be an issue for me, but that can be regarded to the lack of social media usage in my online life. I would advise everyone to get off from these sites for a week or so, and see the impact. Don't worry in the middle of the night, hence sleep well!

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Lui14's picture
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Lui14 25 July, 2020 - 12:48

Yes, I think FOMO is common in my country, especially in quarantine. Unfortunately, this is a reality that will grow in the future, because every day social media addiction affects all people. And it seems to me that I am addicted in a small part. Sometimes I get up at 6 o'clock in the morning, check if someone wrote to me or not, what happened in the world, and then I fall asleep. In addition, I can just start watching Tik Tok and not notice how the hours of my video watching will fly by, but this is an ordinary video ... But, of course, I think that it is good that the Internet exists, but it is bad that people become addicted and get on the internet.

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IGYOON's picture
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IGYOON 21 July, 2020 - 11:44

In my country , I think there is too much effect of FOMO. especially in this quarantined season it is increasing more and more. As we all want to increase our skills more and more in this quarantined season. Also we are wanting to participate more and more in the online competitions. Not only this our want is to become more developed in our extra curricular activities .But this type of activities is only found in the Social media only.so there is a Fear of missing Out. whereas some of us do not have the permission to use social media like facebook before18. So most of us do not get this kindd of opportunities.

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Ga3553E31's picture
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Ga3553E31 12 May, 2020 - 21:26

In my country, most people are affected by FOMO, but I personally don't think I am included. Most often, during school I go to bed at 11-1 p.m. because I don't finish my homework, I'm the type of person who likes to know that everything I have for the next day I did correctly. Even if I use my phone until I fall asleep, I don't wake up at midnight just to check my phone, most of the time I leave my phone on the table and also turn off my notifications. I think FOMO is only made by people, I mean, if you don't want to check your phone, you wouldn't do it, even if you suffer from depression or anxiety, you can do other things. It's really dangerous to interrupt your sleep just for checking, I think that all people should take a break from using a phone and then we will really see the word.

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Giovannichoi's picture
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Giovannichoi 8 April, 2020 - 11:22

Yes, but not me. Most of my friends are doing SNS such as Instargram and Facebook. Even though they don't doing any SNS, they chat with their friends by Cacao Talk and text messages. But I don't have smart phones, so I am not afraid of this. I think FOMO is really spreading around my classmates. One of my friend is staying up late and send text messages to sleeping friends in 2 a.m! Also, many friends are seem to be addicted to mobile games and YouTube. I realise that they were seem to be real tired and depression. Also they check out their SNS and Cacao talk immediately after school. I think it is very, very bad situations.

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hermione123's picture
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hermione123 1 January, 2021 - 06:18

hi, Giovannichoi!
I also didn't have my own smart phone till i really really need it for online learning during pandemic. but i don't use it except for my homework, i don't even use online social media like Instagram or Facebook. i prefer reading and drawing, actually :)

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Elife's picture
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Elife 13 February, 2020 - 23:40

Yes, I think FOMO is common in my country, this is a reality that will increase more in the future because every day addiction to social networking sites is affecting all people.

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Scarlet's picture
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Scarlet 27 November, 2019 - 21:33

I agree that students can't live without phones and social media. I think their parents should take teens' phones at night. Oh, sorry, I must check my Instagram account...

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Hleb's picture
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Hleb 27 November, 2019 - 17:06

I have the same problem only with videos on YouTube. as soon as the video comes out, I immediately wake up and watch. Whether it's a video joke or another nonsense.

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May1's picture
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May1 10 April, 2019 - 11:38

I think it's a common phenomenon among the teenagers of our country. Once I was also addicted to social media and always thought about it even when I should sleep. Once I realized and had to repent for it when I got poor marks in exams. From my perspective, when we will admit our addiction to ourselves and try to give up it realizing the value of time, then after a certain time we can minimize this habit. If we are unable to give up this habit, one day we have to repent for our valuable times.

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Ariyan's picture
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Ariyan 9 April, 2019 - 03:05

Yes ,I think FOMO is common in my country "BANGLADESH".In my country,Almost all the teenegrs who use social media like Facebook spend 1-2 hours at night to check their notification and chat list.However,I am not one of these people because I have no interest in social media. Those people who use internet late at night I call them "Night Owls".

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Dome's picture
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Dome 13 March, 2019 - 20:03

Fomo is a new phenomenon that is affecting young people. Recent studies carried out on young people have demostrated that teenagers between 12-15 years old wake up in the night to connect on the social media.
In my opinion this is a reality that will increase more in the future because every day additiction to social networkings sites are afecting the young people.
When we are young, we think that we are very strong and we can control everything including fatigue.
But this net true since our body needs to rest as well as our mind in order to recover the strength we need work, to study to live.

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Dreamyoverflow's picture
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Dreamyoverflow 1 August, 2018 - 17:57

Yes i think it is common where I live because everyone I have met is obssessed with checking their social media wether you are sitting in a resturant or in a amusement park they will always have their phones in their hand to check social media. I recently removed social media from my phone it was quite hard because I checked social media everyday I almost felt like a addict but now when i removed it I feel much more free and I have much more free time which I apreciate really much.

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Jo - Coordinator's picture
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Jo - Coordinator 8 June, 2018 - 11:32

Hi brett, Thanks for letting us know and sorry about that. The problem should be fixed now. Can you see it now? Best wishes, Joanna (LearnEnglish Teens team)

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SLMT's picture
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SLMT 6 April, 2018 - 13:35

These days,Fomo is the common case in my country too. One of my friends also suffer from it.She slept at my home last month during summer school break.I always hear some noise while I was sleeping .Because of the noice,I woke up immediately.And I saw my friend is using internet in the middle of the night.I asked her what are you looking for that time.She said she is surfing internet and looking her idols’ social media accounts.I was so surprised to see her.That May be the reason she always doze off during school time and always miss school bus.She is definitely the victim of FOMO.How scare it is.

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steleaby's picture
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steleaby 14 August, 2017 - 17:23

I had never heard of "Fear of missing" out before today but I think it's common in France. Indeed many of my friend are on social networks in the middle of the night .
For my part , I always turn off my phone and my laptop because I heard that some waves of wifi can give cancer or stuff like this . BUT OBVIOUSLY I agree with the survey and it's something very impotant so I think that awarness courses about it should be given at school

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QueenPinkBluebel's picture
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QueenPinkBluebel 3 August, 2017 - 14:42

I have never heard of the FOMO until today, and I think that it's common where I live. I was shocked when I read this text. It's really dangerous to interrupt your sleep just for checking. Luckily, I switch my off my phone every night, not because I could use it, but because it sends waves which affect the brain, and if I want to turn on the alarm clock, I put it in the airplane mode so I'm sure that no wave will propagate.

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SC902_'s picture
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SC902_ 25 July, 2017 - 16:23

Well I haven't been sleeping for 5 days to be honest. School and projects still go well *don't try this at home*

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Jo - Coordinator's picture
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Jo - Coordinator 26 July, 2017 - 15:10

Hi SC902! Sorry to hear you're not sleeping well. It's good to know you can do OK at school even if you don't sleep well for a few days. Do you know why you're not sleeping? Joanna (LearnEnglish Teens team)

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fay4's picture
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fay4 26 May, 2017 - 10:28

I don't think we have this case in Egypt but we have worse .. Moat teens nowadays don't sleep at night *like me for example* you find the most active hashtags at the middle of the night also youtubers post their videos around this time
So I think we're turning into night-owls persons soon

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TheMoroccan's picture
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TheMoroccan 22 February, 2017 - 22:01

Also here in Morocco , yiu'll find a lot of users of social medias , and specially it wasn't here in Morocco , the social medias dominated just recently

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sandra1's picture
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sandra1 14 November, 2016 - 19:22

Hi,
I think FOMO is common in Poland, but also other countries. many particularly young people aren't able to live without the phone. Teenagers before going to bed are using phones till late, and then their organism cannot fall asleep. Such persons are then not get enough sleep and have a bad temper.

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