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  • Writer's pictureTosca Killoran

Signs Your Child May Be Struggling to Find Balance in their Digital Life



If your child spends too much time on the Internet compulsive behavior may develop. This can lead to an unhealthy balance of interests and activities in your child’s life. Here are some signs that your child may be developing a digital addiction:


Too much time

  • Stays online much longer than intended to originally

  • Sneaks onto devices when adults aren’t watching

  • Lies about the amount of time spent on devices

  • Stays up all night to be on devices

  • Disobeys rules set in relation to digital time limits


Emotional fallout

  • Becomes angry and/or agitated when interrupted on devices

  • Gets irritable when access to devices are denied

  • Becomes moody, irritable, and/or depressed when not on devices for a couple days

  • Preoccupied with online/gaming life

  • Prefers being online than being around real, live friends and family

  • When offline, remains preoccupied with getting back online

  • Checks social media and emails frequently throughout each day

  • Sacrifices doing homework or household chores for being on devices

  • Forms new bonds with people met online


4 Ways to Manage Your Child’s Screen Time


#1 Choose a Location Wisely

Set up device use in a central location, outside of your child’s room. Make sure it’s situated so that you can easily view the screen when you step into the room.


#2 Install Apps for Age-Appropriate Content

Check what your child is engaged in - the sites/apps your child visits should be age-appropriate. Ask your child questions about what they are passionate about online.


#3 Limit the Hours Your Child Spends Online

This is based on your family values and beliefs around technology. Just remember the best way that kids learn is through our actions as adults. How are you modeling digital balance?


#4 Little Kid-Proof Your Browsers

Install parental control software on your computers. They will screen web searches and sites for inappropriate content. Sites can also be blocked based on your chosen protection levels.


Parents can find Apps that are age appropriate and grounded in learning. Find a whole bunch that ISHCMC loves here:

National Online Safety provides one page reviews of apps in a responsive manner

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