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Handheld Gadgets: Good or Bad for your Toddler?

     With the advent of handheld devices, such as smart phones, tablets and PDA’s, a lot of discussions and researches were conducted to determine their real effects to the development of children. Several studies have revealed that excessive use of gadgets by kids has detrimental effects to their cognitive development, as well as to their social skills. However, there are also researches that oppose these conclusions. According to some studies, handheld gadgets can be considered as educational toys and are actually helpful to the development of kids.
Handheld gadgets were once thought to be some sort of educational toys for children. The pictures, games and videos that the children can see and play from these devices are visually-stimulating. This gave some of the parents the idea that the use of these gadgets can lead to improved functioning of the brain. However, it was eventually found out that gadgets are not in any way educational toys. They are now seen as threats to the cognitive development of children.
What do the studies say?
Use of these gadgets can delay brain growth.
According to studies, a child of a certain age can only be exposed to a handheld device for a particular amount of time. For example, a child who is 3 to 5 years old should only be exposed to these devices for only an hour a day; while a child who is older, between 6 to 18 years old, is only allowed to use or be exposed to the gadget for not more than two hours every day.
However, in the real world setting, a child uses gadgets for 5 hours or so in a day. In contrast to other educational toys, the use of these handheld gadgets actually deprives the child of enough environmental stimuli, which can delay brain growth.
Use of these gadgets can lead to emotional instability.
Giving your child a handheld gadget, such as an iPad or a smart phone is like putting several forms of social media at the tip of his or her fingertips. A simple trip to the World Wide Web can already do a lot of things. YouTube provides a collection of various videos, which may have violent and unfriendly themes. And by the power of the internet, it is not impossible for your child to encounter these un-wholesome videos. Studies have found out that children who use these gadgets longer than the recommended hours are more impulsive and irritable.
These gadgets expose your kids to radiation.
Another reason why handheld gadgets cannot be included in the list of your must-buy educational toys is that they serve as sources of radiation that has negative effects on the health of your child. Radiation has long been considered as a carcinogen, and the rule of thumb is that the longer the exposure, the higher the risk of developing cancer. Toddlerhood is a period when several organs are still developing. Only a small dose of radiation is needed to cause the poor development of these organs. Children are more susceptible to the negative effects of radiation than adults.

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BARBARA SWISHER-RICHARDS is an expert when it comes to educational toys, educational toys for 2 year olds, educational toys for toddlers + itsy bitsy baby boo.

Posted on 2015-02-14, By: *

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Note: The content of this article solely conveys the opinion of its author.

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