6 reasons why portable devices should be forbidden for children under 12

For children aged 3-5 years, its use should be restricted to one hour each day, and children of 6-18 years should be limited to two hours per day. Children and young people use technology 4-5 times more than the recommended, with serious consequences that can often endanger their lives. Portable devices (such as mobile phones, tablets, and video games) have dramatically increased access and use of technology, especially in children in very early age. However, parents should ban the use of all portable devices to children under 12 years.

Here you will find 6 reasons, based on research, to support this ban:

1. The rapid growth of the brain

Between 0 and 2 years, the brains of children continue to develop rapidly till 21 years old. The early brain development is determined by environmental stimuli, or lack of them. Encourage developing brain through overexposure to technology (cell phones, internet, iPads, TV), has been shown to have a relationship with executive function and attention deficit disorder, cognitive delays, learning disabilities, increased impulsivity and decreasing the self-regulatory ability, for example, tantrums.

2. Failure to thrive

The use of technology restricts the movement, which can result in a delay in development. Today, one in three children, starts its school with some kind of developmental delay, which negatively impacts literacy and academic achievement. The use of technology in children under 12 years is harmful to children’s development and learning. 

3. Epidemic Obesity

The use of television and video games associated with increased obesity. Children who are allowed to have a device in their bedrooms have a 30% increased risk of being obese. One in four Canadians and one in three American children are obese. 30% of obese children develop diabetes, and obese people have a higher risk of stroke and heart attack, severely shortened life expectancy. Mainly due to obesity, children of the 21st century could be the first generation to not outlive their parents.

4. Sleep deficiency

60% of parents do not monitor the use of technology for their children, and 75% of children are allowed to have some form of technology in their rooms. 75% of children between 9 and 10 years suffer from sleep deprivation and as a result, their grades are adversely affected.

5. Mental Illness

Excessive use of technology is a decisive factor in the rising rates of childhood depression, anxiety, attachment disorder, attention deficit disorder, autism, bipolar disorder, psychosis and disruptive behavior. One in six Canadian children suffers from a diagnosed mental illness, many of which require a dangerous psychotropic medication.

6. Aggression

The violent media content can cause childhood aggression. Young children are increasingly exposed to increased physical and sexual violence that is present in the media today. The video game “Grand Theft Auto V” explicitly portrays sexual themes, murder, rape, torture and mutilation, like many other films and television programs. The U.S. has categorized the media violence as a public health risk due to the causal impact on childhood aggression. Media reports show an increased use of restraints and isolation rooms for children who exhibit uncontrolled aggression. 

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