18, New York Student at University of North Carolina- Greensboro
Childrens Mind Games- How technology can alter a Childs psyche
Sarah Beers Childrens mind games
How technology can alter a childs psyche
Children all over the globe have access to some sort of technology, whether it be television, a tablet, even a cell phone. This type of smart technology is rather new in today’s day and age, but is it really a good thing to hand our children smartphones when they’re just 5 years old? Whether you’re going to the supermarket, movie theatre, or the mall, you always see a young child holding some sort of touch screen device. Instead of having conversations with their parents, these children are given a distraction from the real world. Instead of having interaction with the things around them, their eyes are stuck on the bright screen held just inches from their faces.
As technology becomes more and more common people are finding it almost too normal to see a toddler holding a device. It seems to be a trend that kids in just kindergarten are given smartphones. Many parents believe that their child should have a phone for safety reasons, they find comfort in knowing that in any situation their child is just a call away. What parents don't seem to grasp is how having this convenience will impact their child as they grow older. Given an antisocial mindset and many other attitude related issues, the extended exposure of smart devices can take a toll on your child later in life. “Children that used cell phones more were more likely to have ADHD” (Kalvin, Hannah. “Is Cell Phone Radiation Risky for Children?” National Center for Health Research). In this article, it spoke about how the psychological upbringing of a child who possesses a cell phone is very different from the children who didn’t have one. One point being the risk of developing ADHD as well as other behavioral issues. Although there isn’t much research on that particular topic, the advances of the study now dont show many good signs of children having smart technology incorporated into their everyday life.
Besides the fact of psychological disadvantages, these children are also exposed to radiation at a young age. Until recent years, seeing a child with a cellphone was never a regular occurrence. Children are given these devices at such a young age with parents not taking into account the amount of radiation that comes out of them. “reviewing studies on children and their cell phone use found that the younger the child, the greater the risk of brain cancer and brain tumors” (Kalvin, Hannah. “Is Cell Phone Radiation Risky for Children?” National Center for Health Research). The radiation given off cell phones is the same type of radiation that is emitted from microwaves. Elongated exposure to this type of radiation has connections to the children developing brain tumors and sometimes even types of cancer as time progresses. “The rate of radiation absorption is higher in children than adults because their brain tissues are more absorbent, their skulls are thinner, and their relative size is smaller” (Nelson, Roxanne. “Children Face Highest Health Risk From Cell Phones.”). Given the previous quote it's quite apparent that constant exposure to this type of radiation can take a toll on the child as they age.
With just having the device, the things on it can severely impact the child as well. As children use their phones and tablets as outlets from the outside world, what they’re taking in can cause self-destructive and sometimes even violent tendencies. Although there is an age minimum for downloading apps such as Instagram and Snapchat, children easily override this rule. “Kids text all sorts of things that you would never in a million years contemplate saying to anyone’s face,” says Dr. Donna Wick”(Ehmke, Rachel, and Child Mind Institute. “How Using Social Media Affects Teenagers”.) Whether it's leaving comments on a post or texting a friend, kids know no boundaries when it comes to communicating online. Losing a friend as quickly as they hit send in most cases. Talking online gives them a sense of power, no anxieties about the consequences they would face if done in real life. Another topic to take into consideration is the games the kids are playing. This controversy has had quite the uproar in recent years and many studies have found that many video games do in fact make children more violent as they get older. “Research by psychologists Douglas Gentile and Brad Bushman, among others, suggested that exposure to media violence is just one of several factors that can contribute to aggressive behavior.”(American Psychological Association) This article also spoke about how children who played war games had a higher risk of being incarcerated later in life. Media and apps can greatly impact a person when they’re young, the young mind is so absorbent, growing and learning new things rapidly.
The young mind is like a sponge, soaking up anything around them. Giving a child a device most likely won’t allow them to grow to their best potential as an adult based on this information. Parents shouldn’t shut their kids up by giving them an iPhone, parents need to stimulate their children’s minds through conversation and real life experiences. Whether it be mental health or physical health, technology shouldn’t be used by children regularly.
-Kalvin, Hannah. “Is Cell Phone Radiation Risky for Children?” National Center for Health Research, 2 Aug. 2017, www.center4research.org/children-cell-phones-phone-radiation-risky-kids/.
-Nelson, Roxanne. “Children Face Highest Health Risk From Cell Phones.” WebMD, WebMD, www.webmd.com/children/news/20140819/children-cell-phones#1.
-Ehmke, Rachel, and Child Mind Institute. “How Using Social Media Affects Teenagers.” Child Mind Institute, 20 May 2020, childmind.org/article/how-using-social-media-affects-teenagers/.
-American Psychological Association, American Psychological Association, www.apa.org/research/action/protect.