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Cell Phones and Child Development

Your child is probably begging you for a cell phone. A cell phone makes them feel more mature and cool. Plus, everyone else has one. However, many parents wonder if giving a child a cell phone is the best idea. There are definitely both advantages and disadvantages of giving your child a cellphone. Here is everything you need to know about cell phones and child development.

Pros

1. Constant Contact

One of the main reasons that a person would like to give their child a cell phone is to stay in constant contact with them when necessary. This can be especially helpful for working parents who aren’t able to attend every event. The child can keep the parent updated. Of course, you need to make sure that your child charges their cell phone before they leave in order to

2. Access to Information

With a phone, your child has information right at their fingertips. If they get lost, they can look up how to get home with GPS. If they need to call a company to get information, they can search for the number. There are a number of times where these things can come in very handy.

3. Teaches Responsibility

When you give your child a phone, you are giving them something that they need to take care of. Of course, children aren’t always known for being the most careful people. This will give them the opportunity to prove themselves to you. When you give them the phone, be sure you talk to them about how easily the phone can get lost, stolen, or broken.

4. Emergency Situations

If your child finds themselves in an emergency situation, they may need to call for help. Whether they need to call you, the police, the fire department, or an ambulance, you’ll be happy they had the phone when they really need it.

Cons

1. Safety Concerns

While a cell phone can connect your child to you and emergency personnel, it can also connect them to people with less than honorable intentions. There are predators on the internet. Young children may not realize how dangerous it can be to talk to strangers who appear cool and fun. Also, having a phone opens up the possibility to be bullied by other children. It’s best to monitor your child’s phone by having all messages sent to your phone. Be understanding that children will be goofy at times.

2. Too Much Screen Time

Many people worry about the coming of the zombie apocalypse, but we might be there already the way people are constantly staring at their phones. Too much screen time can lead children to become inactive and gain weigh. It can also impede social development. It’s a good idea to set good boundaries. The phone should not be taken out during class, dinner, church, or when socializing with others.

3. Expense

A phone is expensive. If your child breaks it, it’s only going to cost you even more. If you don’t have the money or your child has proven to be a tad irresponsible with their belongings, it might not be worth the expense. If you do buy them a phone, get a heavy duty case. You should also explain the importance of keeping an eye on their phone at all times.

4. Dependence on Technology

It seems like children today can’t do anything without referring to their phones. You want your children to learn fundamental skills. If they ever find themselves stranded without a phone, you want them to have the ability to find other ways to solve their problems or access information.

You can read all the children’s books you want, but the real answer comes down to you. Do your research on cell phones and child development to learn what’s best for you and your family.