Last week I shared five tips about helping out when you give your child a smartphone or tablet.
But what about you? All those Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and end-of-year prices are tempting. Maybe it’s time for you to get a new device. If you’re taking the opportunity to treat yourself, why not also take the opportunity to review and strengthen your usage habits?
Saul Rosenthal, PhD December 14th, 2018
With the end-of-year holidays at hand, you might be thinking about gifting your child a phone or tablet. I’ve previously written about helping your child develop appropriate online skills, and now I want to share some tips about setting your child up for success with their new device.
Many parents (myself included!) feel ambivalent about giving their child a smart phone or tablet. On the one hand, it’s convenient, you can keep tabs on your child, it’s the way of the world, and, of course, “everybody else has one!.” On the other hand, devices and subscription plans are expensive, many apps are a waste of time, social media is a jungle, and, of course, “I didn’t have one when I was your age and I grew up just fine!”
Saul Rosenthal, PhD December 7th, 2018
Posted In: Digital Citizenship
Gaming Disorder is a new diagnosis for the upcoming 11th edition of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-11). The ICD is the diagnostic “bible” published by the World Health Organization and used by health care providers around the world. While the exact criteria do not seem available, the WHO defines Gaming Disorder as:
a pattern of gaming behavior (“digital-gaming” or “video-gaming”) characterized by impaired control over gaming, increasing priority given to gaming over other activities to the extent that gaming takes precedence over other interests and daily activities, and continuation or escalation of gaming despite the occurrence of negative consequences.
For diagnosis, the behavior must significantly interfere with functioning and exist for at least 12 months.
Saul Rosenthal, PhD September 16th, 2018
Posted In: Internet Addiction
In a recent piece written for the New York Times, Perri Klass, MD lays out ideas for 5 device-free spaces for families. The article does not directly focus on getting our children off of the devices. Rather, parental media use is the focal point.
He starts with Common Sense Media’s 2016 survey indicating that parents spend over 9 hours per day consuming media. About an hour-and-a-half of that time is work-related. The vast majority of time parents spend consuming media is personal.
What sort of model does that provide to our children?
Saul Rosenthal PhD January 25th, 2018
One of the issues that almost always comes up when parents find out I specialize in Internet addiction is whether parental controls and monitoring apps work. I’ve come to realize that what many parents are really saying to me is, “I don’t know how to make sure my child only accesses safe Internet material and I’m pretty sure my kid will get around any control I set up anyway but I don’t know what else to do. Help!”
Saul Rosenthal PhD April 25th, 2016
It’s an old adage that kids think they are smarter than their parents but that either over time or in any one of countless sit-com scenarios, they realize they are wrong, wrong wrong.
Except when it comes to technology.
Kids often really do know much more about technology than their parents. As a developmental and clinical psychologist, I find this a fascinating phenomena that has significant implications for growth, health and society.
As a parent, it freaks me out.
Saul Rosenthal PhD March 9th, 2016
Posted In: Parenting
Twelve or thirteen years ago, a 12-year-old boy and his parents came to my office complaining he was so anxious that he was unable to get out of bed and go to school. He also reported he couldn’t face his homework, found it difficult to concentrate, was not sleeping well and was increasingly irritable. Not long before he had been a good student, a voracious reader, emotionally stable and gave his parents few problems. In short, he had quickly gone from a ‘good’ kid to a ‘troubled’ one. Initially his parents thought the changes were related to puberty, but as his school performance plummeted and he started refusing to go, they realized something more significant was at play.
Saul Rosenthal PhD December 4th, 2014