As technology develops at a rate nobody could have dreamt of 20 years ago there is mounting concern that certain aspects of tablets and smartphones could induce overuse with children.
Clinical psychologist Linda Blair recently advised children should not use tablets and smartphones before school. Whereas parents mostly believed in the educational value of smartphones their extended use by young children before school could damage their concentration. They are said to raise the levels of the stress hormone cortisol, which makes it harder to concentrate.
But the caution doesn’t there. There is also concern that staring at screens, and the blue light they give off reduces the level of melatonin, a chemical that aids sleep. So there should be a limit set before bedtime.
The final element of the advise concerns homework. Technology has made certain elements of learning a little too intense. Homework involving screen work has grown in use and restricting it may not be too popular with teachers, but time out from staring at screens is needed. Linda Blair also advise that family meals should “Establish one point in the day where the family focuses on each other” and all screens are off. “You have to set limits. Kids have got to know how to manage their screens and be in control.” Perhaps this advise can rub off on parents and especially those emlpoyers who expect employees to be contactable 24/7.