How To Keep Your Kids Away From Screens

August 02, 2021

 


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Your kids will spend a lot of time in front of screens every single day. In fact, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation, kids aged 8-18 spend a staggering 7.5 hours a day in front of a screen for entertainment purposes. This includes TVs, computers, smartphones, tablets, and anything else. 


It's starting to become a huge problem as screen time can be bad for their health. Too much screen time can be bad for their eyes, but it also means they spend a lot of time sitting down doing nothing. So, their physical health suffers as well!


How do you, as a parent, keep your kids away from the screens they so desperately crave? Let's go through a few suggestions:


Ensure they get one hour of exercise a day

Encourage your child to spend at least one hour of every day doing some form of exercise. This doesn't mean they should be running laps around the local park or doing press-ups! Instead, it means doing physical activities that elevate their heart rate and get them moving. Walking to the shops with you for an hour would count, as would playing in the garden and kicking a soccer ball around. Even something simple like walking the dog can go towards this hour of exercise. 


Find alternative forms of entertainment

Kids these days are growing up thinking that screens are the only source of entertainment. It sounds cliche, but they don't know what they're missing out on. When we were kids, we didn't have access to this technology, so we were forced to find other forms of entertainment. Get your kids to put the screens away and provide them with different ways of having fun. Simple things, like puzzle books, are a great alternative. They can challenge your kid for hours, and you can see more here to learn about the different options. Painting or drawing or any other arts and crafts style activity will also be a different form of entertainment. In essence, you look for anything to occupy your child that doesn't include a screen, so they have other ways to enjoy themselves without craving screen time. 


Take screens away from your child's room

Don't put screens in your child's bedroom as this can just encourage them to watch TV or play on the computer for hours a day when you're no longer watching them. If you take all of the screens from their room, they won't be able to use them before going to bed. You can be safe in the knowledge that their screen time is over for the day, and they won't be using them in the morning when they wake up. Keep all the screens and gizmos in your room when you sleep, so they have to ask you before they can use them again. 


If you'd like more help on this, there's a handy infographic below from the CDC that includes these points and a few more:
Infographic By CDC







As a parent, you always want to do what's best for your kids. So, reducing their screen time should be a top priority as it can help their health and set them up for a much better future free from health problems. 


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