Do you see your son spending a lot of time with his smartphone? If so, you are very likely wondering how to know if your child has a mobile addiction or is something normal for his age. And through this post, we will try to guide you on how do you know if your child is addicted to their phone. To help you in this process, we encourage you to take a look at these tips to monitor your child’s mobile. This will make it easier for you to control the number of hours that your smartphone uses.
How do you know if your child is addicted to their phone?
Mobile addiction in children is a more serious problem than we may think at first. After all, any type of addiction causes changes in behavior, mood and another series of maladjustments, both in the person and in their social relationships. Not surprisingly, an addiction is still like a drug, which creates serious disorders if not consumed.
These are the most common symptoms of mobile addiction for children:
Constantly asks for his phone or yours
In cases where children do not yet have their own mobile phone, it is very common that they ask you to use your mobile. But if it is the first thing that asks you when you see yourself and the last thing that asks you before going to sleep, it is when it begins to be a serious problem.
Older children already have their own smartphones, so their use is often limited. But this situation, at the same time, causes that when you do not let them take their mobile to the street, they end up asking you for yours. Or you may also want to use yours after using the battery on your phone.
Change your mood
Every person and every child has mood swings throughout the day. But when this situation is polarized, that is, happy when your child uses the mobile and sad or angry when he does not use it, it leads to conflicts. In this situation of mobile addiction, if you see that it becomes an obsession, you must act as soon as possible.
Your child’s routine changes due to the smartphone
Homework, bedtime, meals, helping with household chores, going to the bathroom … These daily routines can be modified by the use that children give to the mobile. As if that were not enough, in those situations, there is a tug of war, confrontations and blackmail when it comes to following their routines as long as they can spend more time in front of the screen.
This type of dispute between parents and children can be normal if it happens on time, but when all your children’s routines revolve around the smartphone, you may be facing an addiction to the child’s mobile.
The mobile occupies the most time of your leisure
Your children’s leisure time changes the moment a mobile phone enters their lives. However, there is a lot of difference between that situation and the fact that you substitute all your leisure for playing and using your smartphone.
Take a good look at how your children manage their leisure and do not allow the mobile to replace games and outdoor activities, relationships with friends, sports or those hobbies that they liked so much before being hooked on the mobile.
Sneakily use the smartphone
When mobile addiction in children becomes more present, there ends up being more friction within the family. The discussions begin, the punishments… and that makes the children try to use their mobile phones in secret as much as they can.
The lie about usage time will be recurring and they will likely not be honest with you when you are not around to control what they do. As a guide, you can follow these recommendations for screen usage time in children.
Tips to avoid your children’s mobile addiction
How can you avoid addiction to your children’s mobile? It is not something simple since it requires time, patience and the collaboration of the whole family. The goal is to ensure that your child is not obsessed with screens and avoid at all costs reaching the extreme of an addiction to social and mobile networks.
Here are some tips that can help you avoid your children’s mobile addiction:
- Store mobile devices in common places, such as the living room, instead of storing them in the children’s room.
- You must follow your example. That is to say, and you cannot ask your son to leave the mobile if you, in turn, do not part with it.
- I agree with your children a time of mobile use, both during the week and on weekends and holidays.
- If your children get angry because they cannot use the mobile or the tablet, instead of punishing them, try to find alternatives to replace that need.
- Monitor what use they make of the mobile and spend time with them while playing or browsing. Then you can communicate better if you see that the use is not the most appropriate.
- The mobile cannot be insight. If the smartphone is not stored, the temptation to use it will be much greater.
- Set limits on mobile use. But do it in a favorable environment such as the park while they play something else and at a time when the mood is right. Avoid setting limits from anger or right after a tantrum or discussion.