Tablets and smart phones..and the mental development of children.

04-02-2015  10:22


 Tablets and smart phones..and the mental development of children.

It is a fact universally acknowledged that technological advances are eroding the cultural differences among the various segments of mankind. This technology is very useful if propely used, but can be very harmful in case of misuse. During the past few years it was noticed that using the different kinds tablets and smart phones is no longer limited to the adults, but it also included a large number of children of different age groups. Regretfully, many parents are not aware of their danger on the future of their children.

Dr. Wa’el Abdulhaq Al Dakrouri, head of the department of intercommunication disorders, pointed out that it is a modern pitfall in which children fall, with the consent of their parents and families. He gave an example of a scene that has become so familiar in restaurants and public places: A family of three children of different ages with their parents, each of them is busy with his apparatus. They do not even look at each other or talk to each other. He added: There is no doubt that the children spend too much time on their tablets and smart phones on account of the possibility of any direct intercommunication with their brothers or parents.

Dr.Dakrouri pointed out to the studies and researches that appeared during the past few years, and dealt with the effect of the tablets the smart phones on the growth and development of the children. The surveys and questionnaires carried out by a large group of researchers of various specialties in the USA and Canada in 2012 about this issue showed that:


1. Children under the age of three watch TV or videos (On smart phones and tablets) for an average of two and a half hours every day.

2. 25% of the children have their own apparatuses in their rooms.
3. Children from 3-6 years old, watch seven and a half hours of TV or videos on tablets or smart phones every day.
4. It was also noticed that children who prefer tablets and smart phones are seven times more than those who prefer watching TV with their family members.
5. Statistics also showed that 30% of the children who will join the kindergartens, suffer from tardiness or a problem that impedes their intercommunication and social interaction with their schoolmates.
6. The attitudinal change of children and adolescents makes its conspicuous presence in the domestic environment.

Dr. Dakrouri added that during the last decade, the use of the different technological entertainment devices, i.e. smart phones and tablets, have led to hindering much of the growth of the children on the physical, dynamic, interactive and intercommunicative levels to the extent that led to:

1. Obesity, deterioration of perception and distraction
2. Learning difficulties which have become a widespread problem inversely proportional to the long hours spent on these gadgets

The children’s increased attachment to modern technology decreases the levels of their interaction with the others, whether children or adults, which entailed an enormous increase in the number of neurocognitive disorder cases, which require medial interference. We know for sure that spending more time in front of these screens means less chances for the children to enjoy and share intercommunicative and linguistic interactions, which not only deprives them of many chances to develop their interactive and cognitive skills, but also prevents them of learning, comprehending and utilizing non-verbal intercommunication as well.

Parents are strongly advised to be wary, not only about the time their children spend on these tablets or smart phones, but also of WHAT their children watch on these seemingly innocuous apparatuses, in order to prevent them from going astray and to avoid the unnecessary problems that might ensue for themselves and their parents.