“I only use my phone for a few minutes every couple of hours,” said nobody. We all know how hard it is to put down our devices, even for a few minutes. But doing so can have major effects on our children’s wellbeing and behavior, as well as our own.
Screens are truly everywhere in our daily lives. It’s not just TV or computers — we’re often reaching for our phones when we’re walking down the street, checking our laptops at night to check emails, and even playing on a tablet at the same time as we do other things.
Our kids are picking up on this behavior, with screen time among children increasing. As per one of research, children aged 8–10 spend, on average, 6 hours per day in front of a screen. This increases to nearly 9 hours a day at the ages of 1114. It's not just children who are being influenced by the rise in screen media. So too are parents. Despite the growing concern over children's screen time, parents are just as susceptible to spending more time on their own electronic devices.
Here we have shared a few reasons why parents should limit screentime to set an example:
Today, many of us are working from home. The flexibility, freedom, and convenience of working from anywhere are amazing. You have the ability to avoid traffic, save on gas and take time with your family. Alas, there is a downside to this arrangement. There might be times when your line between work and personal life becomes a bit blurred. To put it bluntly – you might struggle to balance work and family life if you’re always “on-call” or available at any hour for work.
You’re likely reading this on a screen right now. Whether it makes your eyes feel dry, uncomfortable, or even burn, you’re experiencing the harmful effect of prolonged screen time. We all know screens emit blue light which can impact our sleep schedule and lead to eye strain, but that is just the beginning. The amount of blue light emitted from screens combined with the number of hours the average youth spends on them increases the chance of macular degeneration by their mid-40s! Therefore, it’s important to take steps to prevent this digital eye strain.
A good night’s sleep is essential to our physical health, but most people aren’t getting enough of it. The lack of sleep is even worse when there are screens involved. Even though we receive more blue light from the sun than we do screens, exposure to it during the day regulates our circadian rhythms to help us sleep well at night. When screens are consumed in the evenings, the blue light throws off this rhythm, leading to sleepless nights, tiredness during the day, and lower performance at work.
A new study finds that people who spend seven hours or more a day on digital devices are more than twice as likely to be diagnosed with depression or anxiety as those who use screen time for an hour a day. Excessive screen time has a negative impact in all areas of our lives, physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Try to reduce screen time and encourage your family members to do the same.
Yes, social media may be a source of news and entertainment, but it is doing harm to real interpersonal relationships. Social media means living life through a screen. This not only starts in childhood but also bedevils adults. People who are saturated with screen time, such as social media, are less able to decode emotional cues. Digital communication lacks depth. Authentic human interaction is the place where people learn to interpret nonverbal cues, assess voice tones and facial expressions, and develop empathy.
If you’re a parent, set an example with your own screen time by being mindful of how much time you spend on devices each day.
Children follow their parents' behavior. For example, if you smoke, your children may be more involved in smoking than other people's children are.
Parenting is a learning experience, with the successful parts of the job not always coming naturally. Parents should limit their screen time because children copy the behavior of their parents. Therefore, parental screen time will have a major impact on your child as they grow. Moreover, consistently staring at a screen leads to higher levels of stress, lower engagement with your surroundings, and poorer health. Furthermore, too much screen time can negatively affect your ability to fall asleep at night. In summary, model good screen habits and limit your personal screen use. Your kid will thank you for it!
Many parents and children alike are busying themselves with their devices, but there is no doubt that what they’re doing is detrimental to their overall development. Parents must limit their own screen time as much as possible while encouraging the same in their children. At the end of the day, it’s important to remember that digital screens can be helpful but they should never take the place of quality family time and real human interactions.
First, try limiting your own screen time. That way, you can serve as a positive role model. Second, check out our website to learn more about our range of products including recordable teddy bears that parents and kids will enjoy!