Addicted to screens kids say: 3D (real life) game is over
Children are not interested in toys anymore, toy business is closing its shops massively, children are spending less time outside than prisoners do and they are into screens at least 9 hours daily. That’s the reality we are facing today – 3D life game is over, children are stuck in 2D reality. Is it possible to bring them back to real life and improve their mental and physical health?
Digital behavior psychologist Nathalie Nahai says that 2D life is created on addiction principle which is called “The Dopamine Loop”. The chemical element Dopamine creates a sensation of pleasure in our brains each time we get a reward. In order to get it, we need to take an action. So as more actions we take, as more pleasure we experience. That’s the model video games, social media and even interactive websites are based on.
“The Online Dopamine Loop – Nathalie Nahai | London Real”
Lets be fair… We, adults, have tried to spend less time on the internet and, most often, it seemed to be even harder mission than to start exercising or take care about our healthy diet. Now imagine kids having free access to screens and content. Why wouldn’t they seek pleasure at any time, any place? How can they know that having too much digitally based pleasure is not healthy? So kids do spend all their time in the 2D world if they are allowed to do so.
Dino, a clinical director of OTC says that “children can’t always distinguish what is virtual and what is real. It is parents responsibility to monitor access to games and content”.
But is it possible to bring our kids back to reality? Delaney Ruston, the creator, and director of documentary “Screenagers” is sure that yes and “this is all about teaching kids self-control, and what we have learned through the research is that it’s absolutely teachable”. How? First, she discourages “a family from getting a child a device when they don’t feel like they are going to be able to control themselves from when they use it”. Sounds like a mission impossible, right? If adults have difficulties controlling themselves, it is naive to expect this from kids. So if parents can’t avoid getting their child a device, then it is crucial to set the boundaries of usage.
Here are few apps for parents, which allow setting screentime and control which apps to install, but basically it doesn’t solve all issues, preventing kids from screen addiction. That’s why, based on his own experience, a father of two kids created the smartest app in the world so far, which has all in one functions. Besides the regular ones, such as screentime scheduling, managing installation of apps, daily/monthly statistics of your child’s digital activity, Blincy app watches out the physical behavior of your kid, while he/she uses a device. For example, if a child is too close to the screen and thus affects the vision, the program covers the screen by the message telling to draw back. Moreover, GPS function notifies parents when the child reaches home, school or other wanted places, the same as if they visit unwanted locations.
And this is just a part of functions that soon will become accessible to everyone and will allow keeping a balance between real and virtual life, will bring peace and harmony back to home and all this is reachable without constant intervenience of parents. As the father Gintas says: “Let technology work for us, not the way around!”.