Does your child have good phone habits?

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Today’s kids have a lot of pressure on them thanks to social media. Previously it used to be just a bunch of their friends and we called them peers. Nowadays, it’s the whole world – your friends, their friends and enemies, grandparents and literally every one who’s vaguely associated with your child are on social media. So how can we help them handle this pressure?

So many teenagers and pre-teens today are hooked on to the various social media platforms. They’re busy comparing their likes and followers with their friends and others in their class. If someone has more likes for a post, they feel compelled to add a post of their own and make sure their own likes are higher. This makes them spend more time online. And statistics show that many children are depressed, anxious and have a poor mental health because of long screen hours. So what can we do to help them?

Build a relationship
Most of us parents are ready to give a telling down or take away the screen among a lot of resistance. But does this help our children know what’s good for them? Or do they end up opposing our rules?

Well, its important to first have a good relationship with your child before laying down some rules. Help them realise that having a phone is a great perk. You need to spend time speaking to them about the pros and cons of social media before letting them have a phone of their own.

Don’t give them a phone if they don’t need one
The law doesn’t allow kids who are under 13 to be on social media. And as parent we can definitely try to delay it by a couple of more years.

Make sure they’re not always alone when online
If they can’t speak to someone online in your presence, that conversation is not worth it. Most kids go to bed with their phones next to them. Don’t allow it. Phone are distracting for adults, let alone children. Make sure they don’t send or share inappropriate photos.

Have friends over
It’s better for kids to hang out at home with each other rather than meet-up online. Tell them not to give out personal information to anyone. Teach them that when a picture is online, it remains there forever and anyone can misuse it at any time. Set limits on their phones.

Figure out outdoor activities
Tell kids to hang out with their friends in the backyard. Do please supply food and drinks, at least they are all within earshot.