Screens can be seen everywhere, As a result, it has become very hard and tough for parents to control their kid’s screen time. However, some screen time can be educational and can also support social development in minors.

Screen time includes watching television and using the internet and other electronic devices such as mobile phones, tablets and video games. When parents limit screen time, children get more sleep, do better in school, behave better and see other health benefits.

A certain study indicates that children around the globe spend seven and half hours in front of screens as compared to preschool students who spend an hour and half (12 weeks a day). By the time a child reaches 7 years of age, traditional games such as outdoor activities become rare.

Undoubtedly, some games available on the internet involve sex, murder, torture and mutilation, which can make kids violent and aggressive. On the other hand, outdoor games (for example, in a traditional playground) have proven to help children be more sociable and generally calmer.

The disadvantages of screen time are enormous and the effects stay with the child even after he or she reaches adulthood. So before handing a mobile phone or a gadget to a kid, warn him about the long-term affects on their brain, eye sight and overall development. A kid’s brain is tripling in size when he is growing and even 10 minutes of physical activity changes the way the brain functions.

If you don’t want to be parents to such children, re-assess the extent to which you allow your kids to regularly use technology before they get too attached to it. There is no stopping the wave of technology. Parents cannot tell their kids to live without them because they will surely need them as they grow older. However, a parent must be aware of their advantages and disadvantages. When supervised and regulated, gadgets can aid in development at the right age, but too much use of technology (and too early) will only delay a child’s learning abilities and put a strain on his psychological health.

This doesn’t mean one should follow one’s child on Twitter or befriend him/her on Facebook. Just make sure you’re communicating face-to-face. A relationship has to be about more than just social media. Make sure you are consciously spending real time with your kids and encouraging them to spend more time with their friends and family members.

ZEESHAN NASIR,

Turbat, December 9.