Too much of anything is poisonous, and this includes Technology. In the age we are living in, technology has become a necessity and not a luxury anymore. It has no age restrictions and the young and old all depend on technology.
Technology has become a way of life, and almost every aspect of our lives has some tech connected to it. Be it shopping, games, socializing, earnings and even learning can all be achieved at the touch of a button. While it has made life easier, technology has its flip-side as well; addiction.
What do the numbers show?
A recent study shows that 70% of the people surveyed in the age bracket of 13-17 years were Addicted to one Gadget or the other. The study indicates that this was at the expense of their education, social and even personal hygiene. This disturbing trend has been compared to as damaging as drugs and alcohol to the physical and mental well-being of a child.
The study shows today’s’ kids are no longer bundles of energy, running up and down, but inactive packages who are sitting on a time bomb when it comes to health issues. This may sound like an exaggeration until you look at the symptoms of Tech addiction.
Is your child addicted to electronics? The signs and symptoms
For parents who observe their children closely, the warning signs are always there. Anti-social kids are most likely to suffer from this ailment; these children do not have friends and spend their free time on a particular gadget as their companion. Due to lack of motivation, the child’s grades suffer. Fatigue and sleep deficiency quickly follow due to late nights on a gadget.
Other symptoms that point to the child that is addicted to electronics include that they prefer to stay home instead of going for a family function or other group activities. The child will often throw a tantrum when asked to put away a gadget showing serious attachment issues on the gadget.
Ways to counter gadget addiction
Studies suggest that a child’s first device should be delayed as much as possible. A two-year-old with a device will most probably end up being addicted as they start depending on it too early. 10 years is the recommended age and restraint should be taught early. The compulsive and persistent urge to use the gadget any time should be discouraged.
Sport is an important activity that can take mind off a lot of things, especially outdoors. Sports by itself are categorized as both exercises and therapy.
In severe cases, a gadget detox of up to a week should enforce to take the mind off the gadget. In India, de-addiction centers have been set up and are even admitting patients at the shocking fast rate of six patients a week.
According to Catherine Steiner- Adair, Research Associate at Harvard Medical School, “Children learn from play especially preschoolers and primary- aged children. Be sure yours spends more time playing and learning from hands-on engagement in the real world than they do on screens”.
Parents should lead by example because most kids ape the behavior that surrounds them. It becomes difficult to deny a child a gadget yet as a parent; you spend a lot of time on one.