A Concerned Parent
As a mom, I was concerned about the length of time my 6-year-old spent on the computer, gaming system and other electronic devices.
I wanted my daughter to thrive and feel comfortable in our technological world, but at what cost?
So I began researching the ramifications of electronic device use and the human brain.
After coming across studies, conferences and medical evidence, my concern grew. From what the scientists and doctors are saying, the use of electronic devices can change the pathways and stimuli response within the brain.
What Does That Mean? It means our digital native brains are physically evolving and because we are stimulated through digital devices, other activities (non-electronic), will seem less enjoyable. Our attention spans will be shorter; our motivation to participate in non-electronic activities will wane.
Since the pleasure center gets accustom to the bombardment of electronic stimuli, it begins to crave more stimuli.This has been shown to occur within kids AND adult brains.
What Are Our Options?
Limiting the amount of time spent daily on a device can be healthy for everyone. Doctors suggest shutting off devices with screens a few hours before a regular bedtime. The light and stimuli interferes with the body’s internal clock.
It has also been suggested that “unplugging” for a planned night a week helps with communication within the family and offers a clearer perspective on how a person can become dependent upon device use.
There are no easy answers. To find out more on the ramifications of digital device use and the brain, check out Frontline on PBS. They offer a 90-minute video addressing the issue, called a Digital Nation.