Years ago, children spent all of their free time outdoors. They played ball, rode their bikes, and they went to the park. Unfortunately, today’s generation has changed. Children have traded in their bikes and their balls for their tablets and their video games. While these electronics keep kids happy and quiet, they also have an adverse effect on children today.
Children who take their screens to bed with them at night are more likely to suffer from sleep deprivation. If your child is allowed to take their screens to bed, they will probably stay up later playing games and texting, causing them to lose hours of sleep. The screen can also lead to sleep deprivation. All devices emit a blue light. The brain interprets this light as daylight. When children are in bed with their electronics, their brain will send a signal that it is time to wake up. Rather than being tired at bedtime, your child will be unable to sleep, even after they have put their device down.
Childhood obesity is a serious problem today, and it seems to be getting worse than better. When children use any electronic device, they need to sit still. This prevents them from getting the exercise that they need to stay at a healthy weight. Years ago, children spent most of their time running, jumping, and playing outdoors, which helped them burn the necessary calories to remain at a healthy weight.
Staring at a computer screen for hours can lead to eye strain and vision problems. Adults who work long hours in front of the computer are encouraged to use the 20/20/20 rule. This rule states that the person sitting in front of the computer screen should look at something 20 feet away, for 20 seconds, after every 20 minutes of computer use. Most adults can adhere to this rule. However, most children cannot. When a child is looking at their screen, they are not likely to look away every 20 minutes. Eventually, their constant use of electronics will lead to vision problems, which will require them to wear glasses.
Aches and Pains
When your child is using their cell phone or tablet all day, they can develop certain aches and pains, such as phone neck and text thumb. The head, neck, and wrists are at awkward angles while children use their electronics. Also, the thumbs were not designed to be used the way they need to be when kids are using electronics. These technology driven aches and pains can result in chronic pain in adulthood.
Loss of Social Skills
Before texting, email, and social media were invented, if a child wanted to talk to another child, they would walk right up to them and have a conversation. They would also call them on the phone. Smartphones have made face to face or telephone conversations obsolete. Today, children text each other or they will send a message on social media. For younger children, this will have an adverse effect on their development of social skills.
There are a few ways that screens can make children more aggressive. When a child is playing a video game, and they cannot get off of level 5, they will get angry. Some get so angry they stomp their feet and throw their device. Another form of aggression is brought out by the content of the video games that they are playing. There are many hand to hand combat and violent shooting games on the market, which can cause aggression at home and at school.
Electronics are all the rage in children as young as three years old. Before purchasing a tablet for your toddler, you should consider all of the negative effects that technology has on today’s youth