Screen Dependency Disorder Is Real And It’s Wreaking Havoc On The Brains Of Kids
One of the sad truths of the modern world is that we are all hopelessly addicted to our screens, as we are constantly on our phones and computers. Unfortunately, many are not aware of just how harmful this addiction is, especially to our children.
Experts are now saying that “screen time” actually has a horrible effect on the development of children. It’s tempting for parents to get some peace and quiet for themselves by handing your tablet or smartphone, but in reality, this is a very bad idea.
Experts have come to the conclusion that there is a correlation between behavioral problems in kids and screen time. They warn that video games and apps create an addictive behavior in a child that has a deeply negative impact on their brain.
As a child brain continues to develop, it “absorbs” anything on their way. Screen time then causes the child’s brain to develop in the wrong direction, which leads to problems that last a lifetime.
Here are some of the most common screen dependency disorders:
- Internet addiction disorders
- Internet gaming disorder
- Facebook addiction
- Video game addiction
- Pathological technology use
- Online game addiction
- Mobile phone dependence
- Problematic internet use
- Compulsive internet use
- Pathological video game use
- Social network site addiction
Dr. Aric Sigman, a renowned psychologist, carried out research to help us define screen time addiction. He ended up concluding that it is an addiction that describes the drastic increase of children engaged in screen activities in a hurtful manner.
Here are some of the symptoms of screen dependency disorder that you should look for in your child:
- Loss of outside interests
- Withdrawal symptoms
- Increasing tolerance
- Lying about the time they spent using gadgets
- Inability to reduce or stop screen activities
- Continuation despite negative effect
- Use to escape adverse mood or problem
Claudette Avelino-Tandoc, Family Life and Child Development specialist and Early Childhood Education Consultant, has warned that screen dependency disorder in children can lead to weight gain/loss, loneliness, insomnia, back issues, vision issues, headache, anxiety, dishonesty, and a feeling of guilt in your child. The disorder also shrinks the frontal lobe of the brain, which then leads to longterm issues as the child grows up.
The American Academy of Pediatrics released the following recommendations for media use for children:
- Babies younger than 18 months shouldn’t be exposed to screen media, and video chats are the only acceptable activity.
- Children aged 2-5 shouldn’t use screens more than one hour a day. Make sure you are around with your kid to help them understand the content of the program.
- Children older than 6 should have limited use of gadgets, and they need to get enough sleep and be more active.
- Talk to your child about online citizenship and safety, and teach them how to treat other people with respect (both online and offline).
- Organize media-free activities. Have dinner together or hang out outside your home. Have a media-free spot in your home.
Find out more about this in the video below: