Balancing screen time with human contact

Tablets and Toddlers: Are They Helping or Harming Development?, Growing Your Baby, April 2, 2013

A thought-provoking article that deserves a careful read. More and more I have seen parents dealing with kids suffering from anger problems and sleep issues by turning to the media in the form of IPad and smart phones and touch screens to mollify their kids. In the short term it works. In the long term there are problems.

As this article points out, there is a need for balance. But the downside of trying to balance screen time with human contact is the fact that the screens are very attractive, enticing and difficult to leave behind. Kids tantrum when their screens are taken away.

Also, the child who expends too much time in front of the screen does not develop actual relations with others, be they friends or family, or teachers or relatives. Further, social skills and active imagination and even creativity can be stunted. Rather easily obesity can become an issue. So we have a number of problems potentially on our hands here.

Finally, of course, research needs to be done, but the issue here is that the makers of these devices of little kids are always going to be one step ahead of the researches. And further, overworked parents are looking for fixes now to their overwhelm, and the media makers offer just that: time to take a breather from the role of parent.