Dr. Laura Calnan
Psychologist in Los Angeles Gives Steps to Take to Reduce Kids’ Screen Time
Giving kids too much screen time to keep them busy is a trap many parents fall into because setting limits isn’t always easy in a world full of screens. Explaining to your kids why you’re imposing a limit on screen time can help them to understand that you’re doing it for their own good and to protect them. A psychologist in Los Angeles gives steps you can take to decide how much screen time is reasonable for your kids.
You need to be tech-savvy if you want to decide how much screen time to allow your kids and how to control it. Try to stay up to date with social media platforms, apps, games, and trends. You can’t educate your kids about the risks of social media if you’re not aware of them yourself or limit their screen time when you don’t understand why it’s so important for their well-being.
Explain why you’re limiting screen time
If your kids understand why you’re limiting screen time, they are more likely to follow any rules you set. If they think you’re limiting screen time for no good reason, they may resist the rules.
Based on what’s appropriate for your kid’s age, explain why certain games or shows can be harmful or why looking at screens for too long can be bad for their physical and mental health. If you allow your kids to use the internet, have conversations with them about certain dangers and use parental controls to protect them from accessing certain content.
Set aside times to unplug
If you set aside times for the whole family to unplug from technological devices, such as at dinnertime or an hour before bedtime, it can help to establish a routine that everyone follows. This will become second nature and make it clear to your kids when screens are allowed and when they’re not.
Have some tech-free zones
You can’t monitor screen use when devices are out of sight. You might want to make the rule that TVs, computers and cell phones don’t belong in the bedroom or your kids may end up using handheld devices until late in the night and not get enough sleep. A dining room could also be a technology-free zone reserved for having family conversations and quality time together.
Encourage other activities
Encourage activities that don’t involve screen use, such as playing board games, reading a book or playing outside. Your kids will realize that they feel better when they’ve spent time outside playing with friends away from screens and will want to do it more often.
Contact a psychologist in Los Angeles
Dr. Laura Calnan (PsyD) is a psychologist in Los Angeles who has been in practice for over 14 years. She uses her experience to effectively assist families or individuals who need help. Remote sessions are available and you can fill out a contact form on the website or call 818.331.1131 for further details.