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Are Digital Gadgets Good For Your Children? Technology - a good friend and a bad foe.

By Prakash Dantuluri

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

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Remember the Pied Piper from the Hamelin, who played the tune and enchanted the children of the town. Later he returned them when the town mayor agreed to clear his dues. Similarly, today's technology and gadgets can cast a spell on your children into the state of techno junkies. Then again, technology can also prove very helpful in gaining social and cognitive skills. It is a good friend and a bad enemy. To gain the merits of the positive edge, a parent should know when to switch off the iPad or how long he should let the kid use it.

In this age of information, it is essential for a child to benefit from technology and gadgets. If you keep your kid away from them, you may run the risk of leaving your child behind in the row of a generation of kids.

But what is the limit? How can we let our kids grasp the advantages of gadgets, simultaneously saving them from falling into the infinite entertainment Televisions and the Internet offer?

The question - how long should a child watch TV or use a gadget is no more an issue of a worried parent. The spectrum gathered more companions that share the common problem. Many psychologists, Human rights agencies, Health Organizations and Governments are trying to find an answer that is worrying many parents.

While everyone is convinced with the positive sides of using technology, the downsides can be easily seized with a little planning.

Technology is a good friend and bad foe

Psychologists mention that educational TV programs, games and learning apps don't cause harm to children when they are properly used. Kids to teenagers may access the suitable stuff, with a time limit. Whereas, the real problem arises when children start sneaking into the inappropriate zone as entertainment media which goes beyond the boundaries of the kids world. These are causing anxieties, depression, and severe isolation among children at a young age.

Experts suggest parents keep an eye on the programs kids are watching. If it is high-quality appropriate content, there is no need to worry. However, parents should always follow strict time limit that works according to the children's requirements.

How many hours

Seriously, there is no time frame developed by anyone regarding how many hours should kids watch the Television or play with Gadgets. It is a call that parents should take.

However, the common figures experts' advice is

1 hour for children from 2-5 years

2 hours for kids and teenagers between 6-18 years

It may be tough for teens to complete their homework within the set time frame. Parents should step in during such conditions and allow the kids to access the internet appropriately.

Frame the rules

Every home should develop certain habits to bring the family together during breakfast and dinner sessions. Create a set of rules as no television while eating; no phone calls during family hour. Parents should put away their smartphones and tablets to inspire the kids.

Be reasonable

It's natural for your kids to hook with technology beyond their time frames. Do not be rude to them, switching off the laptops or by grabbing the phone from them. It is a display of your power over them. Instead, you can choose to be reasonable with your kids.

Try to explain them why they should not use it for more time. Discuss the health benefits by using gadgets for a limited period.

Prakash Dantuluri

Founder & Chief Creative Officer, Bulbulapps

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