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Does the use of smartphones by parents influence children's behavior?
In today's world, young people and older people spend a lot of time using their smartphones. Researchers have now found that if parents use their smartphones frequently during meals, playtime, routine activities, and talking to their children, this increases the likelihood of behavioral problems in children.
The researchers from Illinois State University found in their investigation that the frequent use of smartphones by parents can lead to behavioral problems in their children. The doctors published the results of their study in the journal "Child Development".
Which behavioral problems occur when parents frequently use smartphones?
A new study suggests that even small or seemingly normal amounts of technology-related interruptions in childcare can lead to children developing different behavioral problems, such as hypersensitivity and hyperactivity, later in life, the experts explain.
Using smartphones can disrupt the relationship between children and parents
Our findings add to the growing evidence that there is an association between greater digital technology use and potential dysfunction in the relationship between parents and their children, says study author Brandon McDaniel of Illinois State University in the United States.
The use of technology changes the parents' responsiveness
If parents often use mobile technology, their responsiveness to their children changes, the experts say. In other words, the smartphone leads to poorer interactions with your children. It is really very difficult to split the attention between all the interesting information from your smartphone and the social and emotional information from our children and to process both at the same time, the scientists further explain.
Only eleven percent of parents have no problems with technology-related interruptions
For their investigation, the researchers analyzed the separate surveys of mothers and fathers from 170 different households, each with two parents. Almost half of all parents participating in the study (48 percent) report that they are disturbed three or more times a day by smartphones or other technology when dealing with their children, the doctors report. 17 percent of the participants said that they were faced with this problem once a day. 24 percent of the subjects report two interruptions when dealing with their children. Only 11 percent of participants had no technology-related interruptions with their children, the authors add.
Technology-free time can reduce tensions within the family
Experts advise that certain times of day or locations should be declared technology-free by parents. Parents should force themselves, for example, to spend time eating meals with their children or spending time together after work without using smartphones or other technology. This could help reduce tensions within the family, the researchers from the United States explain.
Introduce limits on the use of smartphones and other devices
The introduction of limits on the use of digital devices can help parents prevent smartphones and other mobile technologies from interrupting their time with their children, explains author McDaniel. (as)