Children and Screen Time: An Evolving Crisis

Bob Livingston

I have been a therapist in private practice for almost twenty eight years. As they say, things sure have changed. The parental complaint of “I can’t get my child to clean his room” has been replaced with “I can’t get my child off the computer, smart phone, video game, YouTube, texting and/or social media.”

It seems that we are in collective denial about the addictive quality of modern day electronics and the reality that many children have more screen time than any other activity. This includes face to face interaction with peers and adults.

When parents attempt to get their children to reduce or eliminate electronic use, kids have reactions that are similar to drug withdrawal: mood swings, restlessness, angry outburst, unusual oppositional behavior, lack of interest in any activity that doesn’t require a device with a illuminating screen. Read More