Parenting with Gadgets/Screen Addictions
Posted on: August 10, 2018. Comments ( 3 )

Author: Anitha.A,
Asst Professor,
Clinical Psychologist, Hyderabad

A small gadget that can operate almost every virtue of technology—from mail to music, fitness to cooking, Yahoo to YouTube—is the SMART PHONE.

These days, electronic gadgets are a status symbol and a style icon, and there is no age criterion to use it. Some use it for professional purposes, some for studies, some for time pass and some to make a child calm or to feed that child.

Unfortunately, what we are not aware of is the adverse effects it has on a person’s, more so a child’s, physical, social, and psychological wellbeing.

Is your child calm while watching videos on a mobile or tab?

Is it easy for you to feed the child while he or she is watching the mobile?

Do you feel proud of your child’s knowledge about the mobile or tab?

If your answer is “YES”, then you must be precautious about your child’s development.

Parents are liable for a child’s physical, social, emotional, and psychological development. Parenting is a lifelong responsibility, which is out of one’s comfort zone most of the times. Any screen interaction could possibly lead to numerous neuro-pathologies like Autism, low intellectual ability, developmental delays, lack of socialization, poor impulse control, and other behavioral issues in children.

How a mobile can harm a child’s development? There are 100 billion neurons in a child’s brain at the time of birth. These neurons start functioning on stimulation, forming connections and pathways. By the time the child reaches 6 years of age, 80% of the neuron connections in its brain are formed, and the remining 20% happens over the subsequent years.

Furthermore, skull size and neuron size increases over a period, with very little improvement in connections. These initial years after the birth, therefore, are crucial for a child’s brain development. When an infant is exposed to a smartphone/gadget, that infant may suffer several health hazards, eventually like cancer caused by the radiation exposure.

Other potential risks involved with children addictively engaged by a mobile or tab:

  • Speech delay, as there is no stimulation of the part of the brain which governs speech expression.
  • Cannot make friends and/or play in a group; poor socialization skills.
  • Only familiar with the characters in the screen and not with the people around them; affects emotional growth and development.

Don’ts involved:

  • Do not feed the child with the help of a screen.
  • Do not calm the child with the help of a screen.

After being denied a smartphone/gadget-based playtime, helpless children will start throwing tantrums as they do not know how to play with toys or others. Therefore, let the child explore his or her environment. Parents should personally spend quality time with children, and not depend on others for your children’s development.

That’s each parent’s personal responsibility.

Educate yourself about your child’s development if you have any doubts.

Asst Professor,
Clinical Psychologist,
Bhasakara Medical College,
Student Counselor JBIET Group of Institutes


NOTE: If you are a parent and wish to share your experience and suggestions, send us an email to with the subject line "ParentSpeak". You may also include limited number of photos relevant to your topic.

Comments (3)


    Rajavelu says:

    Thanks. very useful

    Manoj Kumar Rohilla says:

    Very thought-provoking. Now the research says that blue-light emitting from smartphones and tabs can cause real damage to the eyes.
    Thanks for sharing your knowledge on this.

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