With each passing year, the advancement in technologies is only increasing, especially with smartphones. There are so many new features introduced that people are mesmerized and drawn to use every time. Right from toddlers to the elderly, everyone is amazed by smartphones and their features. And rightly so as it has made our lives so much easier and better.
However, the disadvantage of cellphone cannot be overlooked. Online addiction, scamming, stalking, harassment, and bullying are a few of them. All these things can significantly impact people, especially kids, who are so naïve and gullible.
Parenting in this digital age is extremely tough. Hence, it is essential to know what you’re getting into when you decide to give your kids their cell phones. Before exposing your kids to smartphones, you must set several essential ground rules. As we progress through this article, you’ll learn more about effective cell phone rules for younger kids and toddlers.
Should Kids Be Allowed To Use Mobile Phone?
There are many different opinions on whether a kid should be given a cell phone or not. I think it is preferable to wait until they are of a certain age before handing it to them.
A toddler would not even grab a piece of food in certain homes until their cell phone is handed to them. They want their phones from the moment they wake up until they go back to sleep. Do you think these kinds of habits should be excused and encouraged?
And who do you think is responsible for this kind of behavior in kids? The parents, right? As a parent must make sure that the facilities you’re providing to your little ones do not affect them negatively. As cell phones can be pretty addictive if not used within a limit, you must be very cautious when it comes to your kids and smartphones.
Since mobile phones can be very addictive if not used in moderation, you must be very cautious when deciding to hand over the smartphone to your kids.
What are The Repercussions of Cell Phone Addiction?
In this 21st century, cell phone addiction is a real problem. It can be very problematic and can further give rise to many physical and mental issues. Some of the common problems that you can face due to excessive use of cell phones are:
- Headaches and migraines
- Sleep deficit and insomnia
- Anxiety and stress
- Lack of concentration
- Poor vision and eye strain
- Neck pain
- No social life even though you are “socially active.”
- Dependency on internet validation
Therefore, it is crucial to be aware of all these things, as they can be a lifelong impact.
Yes, using a phone is an utter requirement in this day and age, and it plays a significant role in our lives. Still, whatever the case might be, it is only beneficial if used moderately. Stick with us and learn some of the effective cell phone rules for younger kids and toddlers.
Effective Cell Phone Rules for Younger Kids and Toddlers
To help you out there, I’ve compiled a list of some of the most effective cell phone rules for younger kids and toddlers. Now, let’s have a look at them.
1. Prohibit Cell Phones During Bedtime
Do you want your kids to use the cell phone first in the morning and the last thing at night? If not, then it is vital to lay ground rules before you let them use the phone. Excessive use of cell phones harms kids’ sleeping patterns, primarily if used just before bedtime. And proper sleep is essential for the proper physical and mental development of kids.
Due to the excitement of online games, chats, and Youtube videos and movies, kids often tend to use the device way past bedtime. Because of lack of sleep, they won’t be active throughout the day and eventually can’t concentrate on their studies.
Instead of allowing them to use cell phones, indulge in reading storybooks, drawing, painting, writing, or any other productive thing. Hence it would be best if you prohibited cell phone usages during bedtime. It would be best if you restrict cell phone usages in their bedroom.
2. Limited Screen Time
Cell phones can be very addictive, not just for kids but for adults as well. But as an adult, we can move away from it if it gets toxic, but kids don’t have that sense of understanding. So, it is crucial to limit their device usage. Once you set a screen time on your kid’s device, they will not access it beyond the allotted time. You can also set the screen time as per your kid’s age.
Kids spend most of their time in front of their devices, which has a detrimental impact on their vision and can cause severe headaches. As a consequence, setting a screen time limit is essential for restricting device usage. This way, the kids will get their regular dosage of screen time, and you don’t have to worry about them using their phones excessively.
3. Knowledge About Internet Safety
The internet is a highly unpredictable and unsafe place, especially for young ones who are innocent and unsuspecting. You never know how many online predators are waiting for you to make a small mistake on the web and then spoil your life forever.
Bullying, abuse, stalking, and derogatory remarks are some of the online risks that your kids may face. As a result, teaching them about resilience and cyber protection at a very young age is essential. The kids must figure out what is safe for them and what is not before they decide to explore the internet world.
4. Set Restrictions
Before giving your kids access to a cell phone, it is essential to set restrictions and choose which app is appropriate for them and block the inappropriate ones.
There is a lot of unnecessary and age-inappropriate content on the internet today. Exposure to those contents may have a profound influence on them and leave them scarred for life.
Furthermore, the kids of this generation are curious about everything in general. So, they may accidentally end up on some adult websites. Therefore, it is preferable to block all websites that you believe could be harmful to your kids.
5. No Cell Phones During Family Time
Being constantly on your phone takes a toll on not only your health but also your relationships. So, any household should have a rule prohibiting phone usage during family time.
Nowadays, the kids are constantly engaged on their devices, either napping or chatting with their friends. Well, it connects you with those who live far apart, but it also diverts your attention away from others who are close to you.
And this rule should not only be implemented for kids but parents as well. These days even parents are constantly on their devices. So, it is essential to strike a balance and set aside time just for your family.
6. Use Parental Control App
Are you always concerned for your kid’s safety? Or their well-being? What do they do online, and why are they so engrossed in their cellphones? If yes, then all these problems have one solution, that is, parental control apps.
Parental controls are like salvation for the digital generation’s parents, and it plays a vital role in parenting. It helps you to monitor your kid’s online life. With the help of proper parental control, you can look after them at any point and keep them safe from the online world.
You can also make sure how much time they’re spending on their device and what kind of apps and websites they’re visiting. It is also possible to block inappropriate websites and applications. Bark, Net Nanny, Fenced.ai, Norton Family, Qustodio, etc., are some of the best parental controls available in the market.
7. Cell Phone Etiquette
Cell phones are essential and can be extremely useful in an emergency. However, using the phone in some specific places can be considered incredibly disrespectful and insensitive.
For instance, when someone is having a conversation with you when you’re in the classroom or any meeting, when you’re in a church, temple, theatre, or even at a funeral. Using the phone in such circumstances is exceptionally impolite, and people must be mindful of this.
Using your cell phones while driving or walking can also cause you to harm physically. Therefore, it is a must to learn about cell phone etiquettes and use them accordingly.
8. Have Open Conversations
It is crucial to have open talks in every household to sustain a healthy relationship with your kid. It would help if you had a certain level of trust and comfort with your kids so that they can come to you with any issue.
We all know that the internet is not the safest place. You never know your kids might be facing problems like bullying or stalking. So, you must be the first one they seek help from instead of hiding it from you.
9. Be a Role Model
While dealing with the kids, it is vital to practice what you preach. Kids may not do everything that you say, but they’ll follow everything that you do. So, for all the things you want your kids to follow, try to embrace yourself first.
Set good examples for your kids by being the person you want them to become. How do you trust them to not use their mobile at the dining table while you’re doing the same thing right? So, you must be aware of such little things.
Kids are in the midst of their growth and development, and you significantly impact them. Their identities are shaped by how you treat them, what you teach them, and what examples you set for them.
In this technological age, you cannot deny your kids access to technology. But watch out for how much time they spend with those devices. Teach them both the good and bad aspects of technology. Teach them that the problems are inevitable, but you must be resilient to deal with them.
You are your kid’s first teacher and the best mentor and friend they could ever get. So, fulfill your duty towards your kids wisely, be responsible, friendly, and kind. And never let your kids fall prey to the lure of technology.
Therefore, you can use the guidelines for effective cell phone rules for younger kids and toddlers mentioned above to establish ground rules for them. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them in the comments section below.