On a Tuesday morning, you wake up to find your three-year-old son crying and whining. You take a smartphone, find a show, put it in your child’s hands and behold. He sits the quietly, eyes wide and still. And this is how modern mothers try to pacify their fussy baby.
The magic trick seems to extend to where it makes parents’ lives easier and more efficient. It works magically where children just hunch over smartphones and become oblivious to the world. But what qualifies as excessive when it comes to the usage of smartphones?
Yes, your kids might be primarily using the smartphone as an entertainment device, using it for watching videos on Youtube or even download apps for games. The exposure to the smartphone is not an issue but when your child is addicted to it and not being able to tear away from the smartphone.
So what happens when your kid is addicted to the smartphone?
It affects their ability to learn
A smartphone is detrimental to children’s development which could impair their skills needed for science or mathematically. Children often learn better with materials that they can touch rather than see. For instance, flashcards, toys or even book because exploring in three dimensions is more effective for their cognitive development.
It causes them to get less sleep
The frequent exposure to smartphones can obviously bring about less sleep, fatigue, and even later bedtimes. However, children need to have enough sleep and have their body and brain rested for next day in order to ensure proper development and growth.
It limits their creative minds
Children should spend more time playing outdoors, readings or even engaging in hobbies to expand their creativity, but their easy access to smartphone limits their imagination and optical sensory development. It means that smartphones take their time away from more beneficial physical activities that could help them stimulate their creativity and development.
It impedes their social development
Children’s brains develop rapidly when they are very young. It is the best time to learn to interact with people, but the smartphone is altering interactions that they should have been exposed to. Having their heads down and less eye contact is harmful to their brain and social development. In fact, they can easily affect the bond between parents and their child.
It affects their behaviour
It cannot be denied that over-exposure to the screen has an impact on attention span and concentration, as well as behaviour. For example, the exposure to games on a smartphone can cause a shorter attention span in children. In fact, screen time can permanently damage your little one’s brain! It prevents them from developing any focus, as well as affect their EQ.
It causes an addiction
Over-excessive use of the smartphones can directly jeopardize your child’s development. A smartphone can actually become a source of addiction which causes them to being captivated for a long time. Even worse, it could affect their minds until they are in adulthood.
Parents play a role model in limiting their child’s screen time as well as monitoring their behaviours. As much as kids try to struggle to stay off the phone, parents too. Even adults are drawn to devices whether it is while driving or meal time. Smartphones are tools for learning and growth but it should not be the only tool that children should have to explore.Therefore, parents should monitor their children screen time.
So Moms, do take note of the time your child spends facing the screen! Feel free to share this article and visit Motherhood.com.my for more useful parenting tips!