In an article published in Psychology Today, experts explain the effects of frequent use of online technologies on children and their early risk factors.
The rising number of children using online gadgets are making some parents, teachers, and health workers worried. Mainly because there have been reports that there are early risk factors related to the frequent use of online technologies.
Effects of frequent use of online technologies and early risk factors include lack of sleep, obesity, having a hard time learning and acting in school, and having poorer aspects of life, as well as mental health.
Children are exposed to gadgets
Because of the pandemic, there has been an increase in the number of children being more exposed to online gadgets. These include social apps, online gaming, and messaging apps, or even using texts.
This may be due to children being stuck at home and being exposed online for a longer period.
Past studies only tested and observed older samples but did not adjust for other factors.
With the recent and new study, experts observed 10,460 U.S. school children point out which of them are most likely to later be constant users of social apps, online gaming, or messaging.
With this, they found out that there are some groups from those children who are at a greater risk.
Those groups of children include children from low-income families, maybe due to their parents coming across greater time and resource demands.
Children who were acting out were also at greater risk, which may be due to the reason that their parents use such ways to ease out their children's outbursts.
Their findings also showed how boys are more likely to become constant online gaming users while girls were more likely to become regular users of online social apps and messaging.
Aside from these, experts also pointed out that by a very early period which young children are more likely to later be constant users of such online gadgets as they get older.
Because of such, experts are also able to find out the effects of frequent use of online technologies and its early risk factors, mainly with the children's actions and growth.
Tips to parents
Experts suggest that parents should lower their children's risks of being constant users of online gadgets by setting screen time routines and rules that will help them meet guidelines for physical play, sleep, book reading, and other good growth tasks.
They can also include setting limits to their children's access to such while they are doing their homework, when they are eating, and within an hour of their bedtime.
Also, experts say that making sure that their children are engaged in early learning tasks may help with their children's shift to being good readers.
Finally, experts say that teachers and health workers can also make sure that parents are informed about the often bad relation between constant use of online gadgets and their children's growth and ease efforts to set up screen time routines.
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