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The Digital Deviation – how to stop your child from becoming a mobile phone addict

Work, entertainment, communication, leisure, friendship, and hunger are all limited to our gadgets nowadays. As we rapidly transform into a digitally powered world the usage of phones becomes inevitable. Although, from loss of life to addiction the effects of mobile phones have a vast scope. Ironically these days, our lives seem to revolve around it. Our children too are now on the forefront of this mobile phone addiction which has a name dedicated to it. Mobile addiction is called nomophobia.

We often see parents pacifying children with their favorite show on the tablet at the mall. It is common to notice babies under the age of 1 staring away at the screen for long hours. We in no way are downplaying the efforts it takes for a parent to engage their child or mean to generalize the situation. We recognize that it can get difficult and surely the parent guilt must kick in from time to time. However, for those parents that are struggling with finding a way to get their children from avoiding the screen or those who want to explore the mobile addiction area for the safety of their children, read on because this article explores both topics!

First off, when does this become a problem – what causes phone addiction?

It is extremely easy for a child to depend on something. When we condition a child by giving them a phone/tv time/video game/any gadget or thing in specific they will look forward to only that from the next time around. So, whether it is a random tantrum, not getting what they want, missing someone, or any other emotional stressor the child is dealing with, it becomes easier for the parent to hand them the phone to make them feel better. However, this temporary fix is slowly going to become a major problem. Children are also seen spending increased time watching videos and playing games online instead of doing what they should be doing – living in the moment as a child. So, if you are wonderingwhat happens if you are addicted to mobile phone?

The adverse effects of mobile addiction:

  • Behavioral Problems
  • Addiction
  • Depression
  • Sleep Disturbances
  • Obesity
  • Attention and Hearing Disorders

We mentioned the problems that your child may face but what is the solution? Do not worry, we have it ready for you to apply:

  • Engagement: only you, as a parent, are responsible for what your child may find joy in. If you produce a gadget, your child is bound to be moulded by it. What you can do is take out time daily to play with your child. Live those days that are long gone, introduce your child to pitthu, lagori, khokho, chor-police, chuppanchuppai, ludo and all those amazing games you would play as a kid. For parents to babies: start reading to them, sing for them, dance even. The bond that will be created will take you a long way. These memories will become your child’s core.
  • Restriction: when the softer parenting ends is where the tougher parenting begins, learn to say “no” and set boundaries. Tell your child that they are only allowed a certain amount of screen time. Reduce screen time and ask them to do other activities like painting, learning an instrument or writing. A routine is necessary for a healthy and balanced lifestyle and you as a parent must find a gentle way to put that across while still being stern.
  • Conversation: in this fast-paced life with jobs, bills, chores, and relationships to manage it becomes increasingly difficult to do the most menial of things that can refresh you. Conversing is one of them. Talk to your baby or child. You will build on their vocabulary and form a bond with your baby, on the other hand you will get to know your child better and include them in your day-to-day struggles, respectively.
  • Conversion: before you take any of these steps, the most crucial step is for you – follow what you preach. Let your children learn from example. Whether it is work or entertainment, if you too are struggling with putting your gadgets aside and your child notices that then they are more likely to think that that is just how life works.
  • Damage Control: a phone is inevitable. Sometimes children also need it to learn new things and follow up with school or talk to their friends. We understand. So, here are two tips that will help. Buy a phone with less radiation and avoid the usage of phones while traveling.  A low Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) value is the amount of radiation that your body absorbs per kilogram of body tissue. The maximum SAR level allowed in India currently is 1.6 W/kg. Try keeping your smartphone away from your child when you are traveling because the phone keeps scanning for signals and, in the process, emits a higher amount of radiation.

Children have shifted to being room bound, even when they are spending time together with friends, they prefer it to be in a room with video games over actual play. The concept of a real conversation that makes no sense or doing things that might just get them into trouble does not exist anymore. Climbing trees, ding-dong-dash, playing pranks, running about aimlessly, ripped up knees and elbows, jumping into lakes were all considered matters that would get us yelled at by our parents and now we only hope our children would do the same (not so we can scold them but because that was the life of real laughter and friendship). New Horizon Vidya Mandir (NHVM) understands how concerned you are about your child. As the best preschool in Bangalore among the list of preschools in Bangalore we take off a tiny bit of stress by providing a preschool in Bangalore that allows your child to play, learn, explore and discover the world around them. Only the best preschools in bellandur give your child the experience that they deserve. Click here for admissions.