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Do Electronic Screens Make Kids Moody, Crazy and Lazy?

By Staff Blogger

It has become common to see children and young adults who are hyper active and prone to rages and also those who are depressed and lethargic. A Child’s brains is a lot more sensitive to electronics use than many parents realize and that is often the culprit of the undesirable behavior.

According to Victoria L. Dunckley M.D., child psychiatrist, “Chronically irritable children are often in a state of abnormally high arousal, and may seem “wired and tired.” That is, they’re agitated but exhausted. Because chronically high arousal levels impact memory and the ability to relate, these kids are also likely to be struggling academically and socially.”

When children exhibit these symptoms, they will often be diagnosed with ADHD, depression or some other mental illness and then they will likely be medicated. These treatments often don’t work and at times, even make matters worse.

“The problem is that both parents and clinicians are “barking up the wrong tree.” That is, they’re trying to treat what looks like a textbook case of “X” mental disorder, but failing to rule out and address the most common environmental cause of such symptoms: everyday use of electronics. Time and again, I’ve realized that regardless of whether there exists any “true” underlying diagnoses, successfully treating a child with mood dysregulation in this day and age requires methodically eliminating all electronics use for several weeks –an “electronic fast” – to allow the nervous system to “reset,”” says Dunckley.

According to Dunckley who is the author of the book, Reset Your Child’s Brain, when this intervention is successfully done, the results can be “deeper sleep, a brighter and more even mood, better focus and organization, and an increase in physical activity. The ability to tolerate stress improves, so meltdowns diminish in both frequency and severity. The child begins to enjoy the things they used to, is more drawn to nature, and imaginary or creative play returns. In teens and young adults, an increase in self-directed behavior is observed – the exact opposite of apathy and hopelessness.”

An “electronic fast” can also reduce or eliminate the need for the child to take any medications and even if they do, they treatments work better.


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