Tuesday, 04 July 2017

Parents, Beware! Too Much Screen Time Risks Your Kids’ Psychological Health

Gadget or electronic devices were initially meant to ease our interaction and communication. However, in reality, gadget has caused addiction. By the morning you wake up, the first thing that comes to mind is to look for your gadget. Even during a family gathering each family member is busy with their own gadget, they communicate to using gadget though they sit next to each other.

Health impacts

Gadget may bring both good and bad effects towards children' s health depending on how the parents and their children use it. Positively, gadget helps children studying sports (following movements from videos), looking for the necessary health information, or monitoring their health through applications in the gadget. Gadget can also be a refreshing means for children.

On the other hand, the excessive use of gadget may also give negative impacts for health, for example when they use gadget in the dark, it will damage their eyesight, getting too carried away with gadget will reduce their resting time and may affect their health and growth, children may also develop carpal tunnel syndrome, which is the feeling of stiffness, numbness, limpness, or tingling sensation on the hand due to the compression of median nerve on the wrist.

Psychologically, the excessive use of gadget will make children interact less with the family/friends, reduce the quality of their relationship to others, and affect their social skill. When children are glued to their gadget, they will be less responsive towards the environment and people around them, they become egocentric and are unable to develop empathy and compassion to others.

The impacts may not be felt directly

Though the device is small, light, and easy to use, it may impair our body posture if used excessively. Quoted from the Daily Mail, Kirsten Lord, a physiotherapist, stated that our body is a product of our daily activities. When you are glued to your gadget, your neck and shoulder are affected. You tend to lean forward when you read something on your gadget. That position may damage the upper back and compress the cervical nerves. As the result, you will experience headache, fatigue, and neck stiffness.

In addition, children who are preoccupied with their gadget tend to be lazy to move, which later may develop into obesity. Therefore, parents must teach their children to balance their gadget use by only operating it when necessary to avoid addiction. Parents must limit the gadget use of their children and help them participate more in the interaction with their environment. Setting a clear and consistent limitation in the gadget use for children is important to develop children' s good habit.