But now, 42 percent of American children are using a phone more than 30 hours a week, according to a survey recently published by SellCell.
SellCell.com is a company known mostly for offering mobile phone price comparisons, but it often does surveys of this kind, like what most people do with their old phones and other issues. For this study, SellCell surveyed 1,135 parents in the United States with children between the ages of 4 and 14. The firm found that children start using phones at an early age: 47 percent of children are under the age of six when they start using a cell phone and 12 percent are between one and two years old.
Parents also have a lot to do with these figures. 40 percent of parents surveyed admitted that they allowed their children to play on their phones so they could have a quiet time. A quarter of parents said they had spent up to $ 250 on a phone for their children. The good news (apparently) is that parents pay attention to what their children do, since almost all the parents surveyed (88 percent) say they know the access code to their children’s phones.
The survey found that parents generally buy phones for their children for one of three reasons: to keep them always in touch; for educational benefits or to allow your children to talk to their friends. SellCell also found that 57 percent of children use their phones to play and that 50 percent do so to watch TV shows or movies on their mobiles.
A Common Sense Media investigation found a pattern similar to the SellCell survey of usage time on phones. Common Sense found that teens spend an average of 6 1/2 hours each day looking at their cell phones. And that number doesn’t include screen time spent going through school issues, either at school or at home to do homework. Additionally, another study from May 2019 found that a third of teens actually sleep on their devices – something that’s more prevalent among girls than boys, according to the survey.
Experts have carried out a study to check the adverse effects of children spending too many hours on mobile devices. These are the risks that children spend a lot of time on the phone. It seems that the brain is damaged when children spend a lot of time on the phone. That’s why today, more and more parents are using children’s online activity control tools like mSpy.
Children who spend seven hours or more with digital devices, such as so-called smartphones, suffer brain changes, have worse memory, and are less intelligent, revealed a large study from the United States National Institute of Health. In particular, children who spend more than two hours a day in front of digital devices show worse results in tests of intelligence and linguistic ability, according to a preliminary study report.
Since an adolescent spends up to six hours a day in front of a “smartphone” or a tablet, the results are cause for concern. The study on the Cognitive Development of the Brain in Adolescents, the first official results of which will be published in early 2019, has involved 11,874 children between the ages of 9 and 10, including 2,100 twins and triplets. All of them will be followed until they are adults at 21 research centers across the United States. The study has lasted a decade and more than 11,000 children in the country have been tested. It is one of the largest studies focused on understanding what happens in the brain of the smallest when they spend many hours in front of the mobile phone, tablet, computer, or television.
Although the researchers explain that the scope of the preliminary results cannot yet be assessed until more data is available, in children who spend seven or more hours a day in front of a device, premature thinning of the cerebral cortex was detected, compared to little exposed to digital entertainment. Children with less development in that area show cognitive problems such as lack of memory or attention, in addition to a lower IQ than their peers. The cortex of the brain is the outermost layer of neural tissue that processes information from the physical world. It is important for cognitive functions such as perception, language, memory and consciousness, but it reduces as we mature in old age.
However, the researchers caution that hasty conclusions should not be drawn from this finding since the correlation does not yet imply causation and the change could be due to a different reason. Gayathri Dowling, one of the specialists who have participated and prepared the study, assures that she and her colleagues are not sure that the damage done to the brain is exclusively due to the abuse of technology.
But that damage is undoubtedly present in those who spend a lot of time with a screen in front of them. Dowling noted that thinning of the cortex is often associated with a more mature brain than that of the children studied, so its effect on the children’s brain is unknown. “It appears that we are in the midst of an uncontrolled natural experiment on the next generation of children,” she said.