What are the effects of your child viewing media whether that’s television, Netflix, YouTube or video games?
First, let’s start by saying that your child viewing media isn’t the problem. Your child’s life can be greatly enriched by the entertainment and education that exists through media.
For this to happen, though, children need to be limited in how much of it they view. They also need supervision from parents to ensure that what they’re viewing is safe, healthy and age-appropriate.
Here are some potential dangers children could experience if safeguards aren’t put in place for children viewing media.
An Unrealistic View of Life
Children need help deciding what forms of media are age-appropriate for them. And once that’s decided, you’ll need to help them understand what viewpoints they watch are true to life or not.
This could mean teaching your child they don’t need to have everything advertised in commercials to be happy versus materialism.
In addition, you can teach your child the importance of hard work, what good relationships look like and what it means to think critically. Then, your child will be able to sift through media better and find out what’s true to life and what isn’t.
If your child doesn’t receive adequate direction from parents and other important figures in their lives, they could struggle. They may draw some faulty conclusions about life that will lead to dysfunction in the future if not properly understood in time.
A Potentially Injured Psyche
What happens to children when they view materials that are beyond their ability to process given their age? This can lead to emotional injury and unhealthily acting out the behavior they see.
Whether that means violence or sexually explicit content, parents need to be careful about what they allow into their child’s mind.
Just like a parent would protect their child from physical harm like busy roads, electric shock or drowning, parents need to watch out for the emotional safety of their children.
Someday, your children can develop a better idea of what content is healthy to view. Until that time, your child needs your guidance to understand that.
A Sedentary Lifestyle
Childhood habits tend to carry over into adulthood. A sedentary lifestyle can result when children spend too much time in front of visual media.
If your kiddo is always sitting in front of a screen, their body will grow sick. Your child will struggle more physically and emotionally if they don’t move enough.
It’s not just their bodies that will work poorly, it’s also their brains.
Just like adults, children need movement to be creative, well-adjusted and healthy individuals.
Missing Out on Other Important Childhood Activities
One final thought is that your children will miss out on many fun childhood activities if they’re always in front of technology.
Whether that means playing their favorite team sport, looking for bugs or wading in a creek, children need a variety of experiences, both sedentary and active.
Now is the perfect time to teach your child the balance of using technology because the issue certainly isn’t going to go away.
Need some more advice about how the proper use of technology can benefit your child? The OC Relationship Center can give you guidance on that.