As a young mum I was quite strict with screentime but with my youngest I became more liberal. With no one close to his age TV or games was the easy way to keep him occupied. I have however found more wholesome ways to occupy him
What’s wrong with too much screentime anyway?
Mental Health : Studies have shown that children who spend long hours with screens are more susceptible to depression, anxiety and emotional instability.
Behaviour : Child psychiatrist Victoria Dunckley found that just by limiting screentime children who had been diagnosed with ADHD had major improvements.
Sleep: The lights that electronic screens emit interrupts sleep, no wonder gamers sometimes act like zombies. Many times our screens keep us awake even when we are tired. We want to watch one last episode, play the next level, scroll through IG/tiktok one last time.
Time: When our children (and us) spend less time on the screens we are able to achieve more…read and write, meet more goals, socialize more and generally engage in more wholesome activities.
Relationships: We have all seen it before. We take our children to visit and everyone has their nose buried in a device. No one is talking to each other and there is little interaction. Too much screen time can therefore be a distraction to developing important relationships.
Brain: Research shows that the brain is affected negatively by vivid colours and fast movements of video games and cartoons. They over stimulate the brain and may even affect the frontal lobes which are responsible for empathy, planning, impulse control, personality etc from developing properly.
Creativity : A child who is constantly on a device will be hindered creatively . “Boredom” stimulates the brain to be more creative and come up with all sorts of solutions. I noticed this with my 13 year old who is a keen artist. When I allowed her have more access to her tab her creativity reduced.
Academics : It is easy to understand how too much screen time can affect academic performance. If your child spends too much time on their screens then he will spend less time studying.
Have you noticed any of these adverse effects?