Flashback! Your 8-year old kid comes running to you for every little thing; you craved for even 5 mins of alone time. Now: your happy go lucky kid has turned into a preteen/teen and all that is gone. Since the day you got them a phone or tab, you see their faces lit with the screens glow all the time. Neither they come to you (as before) nor they pay heed what you say! While you prefer them to bury their faces in the books, they bury themselves in the technology to use Facebook, Twitter or Whatsapp instead.
Technology is the gateway to reach people through Instanat Messengers, Mobile Messaging Apps and Social Media Websites. All these platforms are popular and have changed the meaning of communication; removing barriers, connecting friends and people all around the globe. Teens are addicted to technology because of these forums; hence you see them glued to their cell phone or tablets all the time.
Withal, spending too much time on technology in these forums, does more harm than good. According to American Psychological Association, teens that spend too much time using technology miss more school and tend to have health problems like sleep disorders, stomach aches, depression and anxiety. The same study suggests that teens that spend too much time online develop a narcissist personality.
Teen body health issues
Parents need to be fully aware of the health issues which follow technological abuse. Here are some of those:
Higher anxiety and low self-esteem
Teens use social networking sites for self-marketing. They use ‘likes’ and ‘tags’ to increase their value among friends. Every teen’s goal is to show that they have a great life and when teens don’t get enough feedback they tend to feel worthless and restless. This can greatly increase anxiety and low self-esteem in your teens.
Teens develop eating disorders
‘Thinspiration’, previously used as a health and fitness term is now used by teens to search information on eating disorders. Being exposed to pictures of the ‘ideal’ body, i.e. thigh gap, develop eating disorders in teens. Because they are constantly striving to become thin, even if this means starving themselves.
Sexting is no big deal
70% of teens admit they sext with their boyfriends or girlfriends! Sexting is a gateway to physical relations, which can result in premature sexual activities, dating abuse and even lead to sexually transmitted diseases.
Higher rate of car accidents
According to stats, 1 out of 5 teen drivers will have an accident in their first year of driving. Because when they text and drive they mirror the driving actions of a 70 year-old person!
How can parents keep them safe?
No matter how much teens think they are responsible and mature, they tend to act recklessly. It’s your basic parental instinct to always keep them safe from getting into trouble and for this, you need to keep an eye on them at all times. Smart parenting apps can be of great help to monitor teens’ technology usage and reduce their screen time.