You sit down in the morning and turn on the TV; you pull out your phone and scroll through your twitter feed; then you whip out your Nintendo Switch and start playing that new Mario game. Before you know it, the clock’s reading 6pm and you haven’t done much of anything except stare at screens all day.
While this happens to the best of us, what happens when this becomes a regular occasion? And what happens when our children are the ones staring down into their screens all day? As it turns out, our children are particularly susceptible to the harmful effects of too much screen time. Here’s how:
The Physiological Effects
There are many ways too much screen time can adversely affect the overall health of our children. The light emitted from digital screens, for instance, can disrupt sleep patterns. Too much screen time can also lead to childhood obesity, as it encourages a more sedentary lifestyle.
The Emotional Effects
In addition to poor sleep and fitness, too much screen time can also have some serious emotional effects including, but not limited to:
- Increased stress
- Increased anxiety (especially with no access to screens)
- Increased impulsivity
- Decreased emotional regulation
The Neurobiological Effects
In layman’s terms, this is how staring at screens all day can fundamentally alter the way our children’s brains work. This not only includes the physical and emotional impacts listed above, but also the following:
- Decreased ability to take on challenging tasks
- Decrease in problem solving skills
- Decreased attention span
- Decreased test scores and educational standing
How to cut down on screen time
Needless to say, letting your kids stare at screens all day, every day is detrimental to their health and school performance. It’s best to start getting your kids weaned off of their electronics as soon as possible. To do this, start establishing household rules, such as no digital devices during meals or in the bedroom, and set a specific amount of time your kids are allowed on their digital devices each day. You should also plan on follow these rules, as not only will it set a good example to your children, but it can also help protect you against the adverse effects too much screen time can have on your health.
At Steadfast Academy, we can help your child decrease their reliance on their digital devices, all the while providing them with a great educational experience. Give us a call today at 281-991-3999 to book a tour and find out why so many Pasadena parents have enrolled their children in our early childhood programs!