From smartphones and social media to TV and tablet-based toys, today’s children are constantly overwhelmed by technology. While it’s necessary for kids to develop an aptitude for technology as they will use computers their whole lives. Too much use of technology can have detrimental health and physical effects. These negative effects on children’s health lead to an increased risk of obesity and loss of social skills. These also lead to problems related to behavior.
How Technology can Affect Children
In today’s world, technology is everywhere. While we cannot entirely ban technology, we can set limits for our children to offset some of the pessimistic effects. An increased level of screen time can affect your child’s physical health and behaviour. In this article, learn more about the physical and mental effects of too much use of technology and discover what you can do to help your kid.
Childhood Obesity and Technology
When kids spend more time typing or tapping on a screen, they are naturally spending less time outside or engaged in physical activities. Research has found that infants and adolescents may engage in more mindless eating while they watch TV or play video games, resulting in increased obesity rates in them.
While children will naturally be interested in using app-based technologies, it’s important for parents to make sure they are spending time outside and getting enough physical activity. Encourage kids to play outside. In case you are available and time permits, join them in outdoor play. You can engage them to play games, such as hide-and-seek or tag, grab a mitt and a ball and play catch or throw a frisbee around at a park. Your kids will surely enjoy the extra time they get to spend with you, as well as the exercise and outdoor time will help them burn off energy resulting in better sleep.
Negative Effects of Technology on the Social Development of Kids
Technology has changed the way people interconnect with each other. Adults are more prone to send a text vs. make a phone call. We often behave in a different way on social media than we would in person. These differences are not exclusive to grown-ups. When children spend a decent amount of time on social media, it can lead to lower self-esteem. Teenagers are viewing curated content such as a digital highlight reel that can lead to distress when they compare themselves to their peers. Technology use can cause social and behavioural problems among kids as it minimizes the number of time kids spends interacting with others.
Make sure to monitor your kid’s social media use, the types of websites they are visiting and the games they are playing online. You can set up parental controls on computers, smartphones, and tablets for blocking unsuitable websites and apps. Also, you can keep the computer, game console, or TV in a common room so that you are able to monitor your child’s technology use.
Managing Screen Time
Are you aware of how much time your kids spend per day on electronic devices? Teenagers spend up to nine hours per day watching or using digital screens and children of eight to twelve years of age spend four to six hours a day doing the same. Some use of technology is compulsory in schools and after-school programs. Therefore parents must try to limit their screen time whenever possible. They should be aware of the websites kids are visiting. They should also make sure they are spending most of their time watching educational content.
Get engaged to limit technology use
It’s necessary to evaluate how much screen time is OK for your kids and which activities you engage your child in. If your kids are utilising screen time more than normal just try to monitor what they’re watching. Also if it’s not interfering with their schoolwork, health, or behaviour.
Your children will grow up surrounded by technology. If you set up good habits early on, you can offset the adverse effects of technology on kids. Where most learning programs nowadays are computer and technology-based, Kumon is a child learning centre that uses and promotes the traditional paper and pencil method of learning. If you don’t want to further increase your child’s screen time, enroll them on Kumon and let them practice maths problems by writing them out, erasing the errors, and writing them again, without relying on calculators and computers. To know more about Kumon, visit our website.