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Children and the Overuse of Technology

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Parents worry about how excessive mobile use is affecting their children but struggle to tame their tech habits, suggests a survey.BBC

It found that 43% of 7,000 parents across Europe who were surveyed were concerned that using gadgets meant their children slept poorly.

Others feared what tablet and phone use did to social skills (38%) and children's mental health (32%).

But many said they set a bad example with their own heavy use of gadgets

Tech natives

Compiled by security firm Norton, the survey the parents what their children - ranging in age from five to 16 - did with gadgets, and how long they spent staring at them.

Based on the findings, children now seem to crave screen time with their tablets and phones more than they do sugar and sweets. British children were more likely to be looking at a screen than playing outside, and almost a quarter - 23% - were online more than their parents.

E-parenting tips

  • Set house rules such as screen time limits, and what children are allowed to view
  • Talk to children about what they do and see online
  • Encourage them to communicate with friends in online social spaces
  • Teach children to think before they click
  • Use tech tools to limit how much inappropriate content they see
  • Discuss the risks of posting private data, images and videos to social networks
  • Be a good role model

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