Eskişehir Osmangazi University (ESOGÜ) Faculty of Medicine, Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Diseases. Lecturer Damla Eyüboğlu said, “Exposing the screen before the age of 2 can cause speech delay, social inadequacies, sleep and attention problems, behavioral problems in children, and may prevent the child's healthy psychosocial development. After the age of 2, it should not exceed 1-2 hours a day.”
Eyüboğlu stated that technology provides convenience in many stages of life and has an important area of use.
Eyüboğlu said that in the past, only television came to mind when the word “screen” was mentioned, and drew attention to the fact that now other types of screens such as “tablets, computers, smart phones and notebooks” have taken their place in homes. Eyüboğlu emphasized that these devices are used for entertainment, education and learning purposes as well as communication.
Eyüboğlu stated that the fact that there are too many areas of use and that they are now more easily accessible results in the presence of more than one device in every house. Saying that this causes children to be exposed to more screens from an early age, Eyüboğlu made the following statements:
“Among the questions frequently asked by parents in child psychiatry clinics, 'At what age should we give the tablet to the child?' and “How long should you spend it on your head?' is located. Of course, the answer to these questions depends on the age of the child. However, as a result of the researches, it was concluded that children should not come into contact with the screen before the age of 2.
Pointing out that one of the important issues is “when and where the child spends time on the screen”, Eyüboğlu made the following assessments:
“In today's conditions, parenting characteristics have become different from what we see from our own parents. We focus more on our work and spend more energy on improving our living conditions. For this reason, the time we spend on our children at home and the attention we show to them decreases. While we want to come home and rest for a while, or go out and have a good time somewhere, we want to devote a little more of our energy to ourselves. Our child, who is waiting for attention, looks into our eyes. At this point, smartphones and tablets come to the rescue. Because when the child picks up the screen, it sits quietly in place without causing any problems. Just in this case, the definition of 'Digital caregiver' for electronic media can find its place.”
Eyüboğlu emphasized that this situation, which seems very innocent at first, can cause many harms to the child as it becomes routine, because the child's attention and interest is directed from the environment to a small screen.
Eyüboğlu said that the interaction with the family, emotional sharing and environmental awareness of the child, who was immersed in the screen, decreased.
“This may cause the child to experience social relationship problems. In addition, as the duration of screen use increases, aggressive behaviors in children also increase. In the use of electronic media, it is necessary to carefully consider the content of the child's or young person's use. Because social media control is very limited. Therefore, the responsibility falls on families. To protect children, they need to check whether the networks they are interested in are reliable. It is quite difficult to control completely. Therefore, children should be informed by their parents about how to use electronic media, what to pay attention to and how to protect themselves before they start using electronic media.”