How can dependence on information technology be detected and what consequences it has

In the digital age, we more often meet with dependence on smartphones, tablet PCs and computers. Contacted by IPN for a comment, psychologist and doctor of psychology Diana Ştefăneţ said that we can speak about a problem related to information technology when the child or the teen becomes negligent to the exterior, is aggressive, prefers more the virtual sphere than the real one, forgets to eat, loses the sense of time, becomes irritated when the telephone is taken away, lies and denies the overuse of technology.

The consequences start from the risk of losing the friends and social relations, worsening of results in learning and can end with development of nervous system diseases. A particular approach should be adopted for each age interval. For children of preschool age, the game is the main activity. The parents should fill their time with different games so as to attract their attention. For school students, it is important to have sources that help them improve the level of knowledge. When we speak about teens, we refer to socialization. They feel the need to have a friend, a model with whom to discuss and who will devote attention to them.

During the pandemic, those who sought help from the psychologist underlined the need of socialization, invoking the lack of face-to-face interaction and exhaustion due to the switchover to online learning. “The person needs natural factors, such as light, air, nature, direct interaction with people. During the pandemic, owing to isolation, much more time is spent on the computer and on smartphones and the nervous system of children is thus affected. They suffer from insomnia and headaches and can experience even more serious disorders,” said Diana Ştefăneţ.

To prevent dependence in children, it is recommended reducing the time spent in front of a computer and using the smartphone, supervising the children and organizing activities to fill their leisure time, ensuring efficient communication between parents and children. “If you yet see dependence in your children and the problem worsens, a psychotherapist should be immediately consulted. This is not a joke. The later will you identify this dependence, the harder will it be to change the situation” concluded the psychologist.

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