Your child’s vision will not deteriorate from reading or staring at the screen. The lens of your kid’s eye cannot be altered by the screen (WebMD, Computer Vision Syndrome). However, other things can happen. Your kid can become easily tired, obese or even aggressive. They can develop headaches and even insomnia as a result of too much screen time. Answering this question with a simple number is not easy because it involves a lot of factors. Here are the things to consider once you decide to do something about the time your child spends gazing at a screen.
Your Child’s Age
The crucial age when it comes to deciding on a decent amount of screen time is the age of two. Before turning two, your child should not be exposed to screens. They are too small to understand what is coming from the screen, so the benefits are really reduced. On the other hand, it can hurt their sleeping pattern or exhaust the muscles of their eyes. Therefore, before the age of two, forget about leaving your kid in front of TV or a computer. Even when they turn two, sitting in front of a tablet or your flat screen should not exceed two hours during the day. Increase that number of hours with your kids age only if it involves quality content.
The Quality of the Screen Time
It is very wrong to say that any type of screen time is a bad thing. There are many benefits that your child can gain by using things like computer, smartphone or tablet. The obvious thing is that by introducing these devices into a kid’s life, you are helping them become a digital native. Besides that, there are many amazing apps, programs and different types of content that cater to your kid’s inquisitive mind and its type of intelligence. It allows your young one to learn in a fun way.
Things You Can Do
Do not try to make your child’s life screen-free. It is not a solution and it will not do your kid any good. However, you can make sure that the time it spends in front of a screen is of high quality. A lot of child care centres implement educational technologies into their daily programs. Different educational authorities like British Council or Cambridge University Press offer a lot of online games and courses that children can use to develop their language skills, among the others.
The Types of Screens and Devices
It is the entirely different thing if your child reads from a paper or from the screen. The issue with the screens is that radiates light and flickers. However, not all screens are bad for your eyes. There are those advanced screens that block the radiation or have a high refresh rate. That means that the flicker is reduced to a minimum. When purchasing a device that your little one will be exposed to, make sure that it is of high quality. This goes for TVs, monitors, tablets and smartphones, respectively.
Modern gadgets and devices are a part of our everyday life. It will become even more integral part of the lives or our children. Therefore, denying them the right to learn how to use those gadgets responsibly is not the answer. The best you can do is to teach children to look at the screen only if a quality content is in question. Also, it is great if they can combine the screen time with some sort of physical activity, like singing, dancing or miming sport movements. Screens are not your enemy, they are the tools to make your kid smarter and happier.
About the author
Gabriella Diesendorf is a freelance writer from Australia and a devoted mother. She loves badgering about beauty, green lifestyle choices and parenting techniques, and if you mention attachment parenting or natural makeup she will bore you to death.