We have entered into a new world where electronics have literally become the way of life. We have taken away having conversations, responsibilities, and personable relationships, and have replaced them with our phones, tablets, computers, games systems, and more. But how harmful is this? How many of us even think this is a problem?
There used to be a time where kids sat on the edges of their seats all day, waiting to get home just to go outside and play. Now, it seems as if they rather grab an electronic to play video games, create TikToks, or watch weird Youtube videos.
Is Your Child Addicted to Screentime?
Let’s paint a picture. Have you been to a restaurant and seen parents have a whole set up for their kids to watch Youtube just to keep them quiet? What happened to just disciplining them for out of control behavior in public places or better yet having family time and asking them about their day?
According to The American Academy of Pediatrics, children under two years old should not have any screen time, and those aged between two and five should have no more than one hour per day. What does this mean? It’s simple, we are failing our kids by allowing them to lose certain aspects of human interaction. It’s a wonder why anxiety, isolation, and suicide in our children are at an all-time high.
We have become a microwavable society. We want things fast and we want them in the NOW. This means the lack of patience has also taken over. We all know what an inpatient person looks like. If not, we can all just look in the mirror.
“In the US, kids between ages 8 and 12 spend an average of 4 to 6 hours per day looking at screens, while teenagers may spend as much as 9 hours per day. Adults in the US spend even more time on screens – on average just over 10.5 hours each day.” (The insider, 2020) This is insane! We are spending more time on our screens than we are sleeping.
We have the technology to help us be productive, but it seems that the line between being productive and using technology for entertainment purposes has now blurred because of how accessible everything is nowadays. We need to know when enough is enough! Everyone knows what addiction looks like so why aren’t we aware of this being an addiction.
How Can We Decrease Children’s Screentime?
There are many ways to start fixing this issue. We can start by unplugging more and spending time outside, reading books, interacting with people in person, and not just through a screen. If we all make an effort to do this, it will slowly begin to change the way our society uses technology. We need to set boundaries for ourselves and hold ourselves accountable.
They say experience is the best teacher, so today is the day to start a new trend! Put down the phone and go do something else. I’m not saying to quit cold turkey from your social media accounts, but maybe unfollow some people who always post pictures of food or selfies when you could be outside hiking instead! It sounds hard but just imagine the health benefits, and how good you’ll feel when you finally take a break from technology and enter back into the world of human interaction!