How to Help a Teen Overcome Screen Addiction
How to Help a Teen Overcome Screen Addiction

How to Help a Teen Overcome Screen Addiction

In this digital age, many parents are growing increasingly concerned about their teens having an Electronic Addiction

Electronics, such as smartphones, are taking over teens’ attention, leaving parents wondering, “Why is my teen obsessed with their cell phone?” Young teens are constantly connected to their smartphones and various other electronics. Parents of children with smartphones, etc. know this is hardly an uncommon occurrence, and are left wondering how they can get their teens to take a break the addictive hold that various electronic media have over their lives. 

Plain Facts For The Digital Age

Common Sense Media, an organization that strives to improve the lives of families through technology and media education, conducted a study that showed just how electronically-addicted today’s teens are. When the teens were asked to conduct a study about their attachment to mobile devices, the results have shown light on the fact that 41% of teens claimed to be “addicted to their mobile device.”

While this may sound like a frivolity to the uninitiated, it has actually become a rather serious issue in today's modern times.

Children and teens are lacking exercise and the interpersonal relationships that they would have offline, without being attached to mobile devices. In fact, it’s hardly a rare event to see teens and children hunched over their tiny screens at family gatherings, ignoring the real world, including friends, parents and other relatives around them. What's more, these younger generations are missing out on invaluable memories, instead, choosing to dedicate their time to update the statuses on their various social media platforms. 

Is this going on everywhere? How should parents handle it?

When speaking with parents across the country, CNN heard countless growing concerns about teens being tied to their electronics. Parents across the country agree that this is a major concern that must be addressed. Sandra Bond Chapman, the author of Make Your Brain Smarter, and founder/chief director of the Center for BrainHealth at the University of Texas, claims that parents who demonstrate such concerns should first embrace the technology their kids are so dependent on, and not punish them with it.

She further suggests challenging their teens to do “interval training,” during which teens switch off from 30 minutes of uninterrupted homework to being allowed on their devices, and back to 30 minutes of homework.

"Results have shown that teens are surprised at how much better they perform mental tasks when they are not distracted by technology. This just proves that teens would do so much better in school if parents did not give them unlimited access to cell phones and other electronic devices. Instead of focusing on what their friends are sharing on Facebook, teens should be concerned with what the ancient Mesopotamians did to have such a flourishing society."

Are You a Parent of a Screen-Addicted Child? If So, There's Help Just a Phone Call Away!

Are you a parent of a screen-obsessed child who feels as though you have tried everything to help them break away from their electronic addiction, but still cannot get your teen to give up their electronics? Rehabilitation and treatment centers, such as Family First Adolescent Services, offer treatment that will help teens overcome their Electronics Addiction. 

Many parents are facing the reality that problematic gaming is a very real threat to their teenage children. What was once an innocent hobby has transformed into an addiction that has overtaken their lives. Additionally, many parents are confused about what exactly problematic gaming is and what to do about it.

At Family First Adolescent Services, we are dedicated to treating the underlying issues that present themselves in our clients’ behavior before coming to treatment. We believe that the behaviors themselves, whether it is substance use, problematic gaming, gambling, defiance, anger issues, or risk-taking behaviors are symptoms of a deeper problem.

Family First is a Residential Treatment Center for Troubled Teens on the Cutting Edge of Screen Treatment, Such as Problematic Gaming Disorder

What Is Problematic Gaming?

Gaming disorder is defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) in the 11th Revision of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-11) 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 gaming disorder to be diagnosed, the behavior pattern must be of sufficient severity to result in significant impairment in personal, family, social, educational, occupational or other important areas of functioning and would normally have been evident for at least 12 months.”

Like drug addiction, alcoholism, and many other types of addiction, Problematic Gaming is a real disease with real consequences. It is also particularly harmful in teens due to the social acceptance of excessive gaming. Many parents still view excessive gaming as a “childhood” phase, and something their kids will “grow out of.”