The battle about screen time has been going on since television became common in every home, with parents and experts expressing warning and advocating for less screen time.
The American Academy of Pediatrics recently reported that children spend an average of seven hours daily absorbing media through television, computers, phones and other devices.
So how can parents recognize if their children are addicted to the screen?
Child psychiatrist Joe Austerman shared with CBS New York some ways to know if a child is more than just casually passing time playing a video game?
"If there's any change in mood or any change in anxiety or especially if you're trying to get your child off of the video games, that you see they become explosive or they have a really strong attachment to these video games," this is one sign of a child being addicted.
Tammy Gold, a parenting expert, suggests that if children think they cannot live without a device when leaving the house or going on a trip, or if the child has an outburst from a broken computer, this can also be a signal to parents, according to CBS.
"It's not just playing video games; it's letting them have the geo mapping where they're posting pictures that's showing where they are, they're engaging in chatting in different worlds and it can be really dangerous," Gold said.
AAP recommends no more than two hours of screen time each day, no matter the device it is being accessed on, wrote CBS.
However, it isn't just children or teens who can be addicted to screens, games and social media. Parents are often culprits of screen obsession as well.
Additionally, 58 percent of adults have a smartphone, and 7 percent of those said that they are "smartphone-dependent," according to Pew Research Center.
Lisa Strohman, a psychologist, lists symptoms of different forms of technology addictions as: "loss of time due to technology, withdrawal from people, negative consequences at work or in your relationships and a higher tolerance for technology," wrote Everyday Health.
Changing behavior and treating these addictions like any other are some of the ways they can be overcome, so as to not take as much time from people's lives.
Some suggestions Everyday Health gives for overcoming technology addiction include:
- Have a no-technology day. Schedule a day every few weeks to put away your phones and computers for 24 hours.
- Get out there. Find things to do that don't involve being online.
- Time yourself. Every day, write down how many hours you've spent on your computer or smartphone.
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