One of the toughest questions that parents have had to answer is: “When is the right time to buy my child a mobile phone?” Just like jelly and peanut butter, cell phone and everyday life have become inseparable. The use of cell phone among adults is, however, justified. Truly, the actual age when the child is ready for cellphone is a statement of debate. Some agree that child is ready for cellphone at the age of 12, while others strongly hold that 14 is the perfect age. There is no particular cut-off age to say that your child is ready for a cell phone. It is said that later ages are always safer. The child should be matured enough and should have a sense of responsibility regarding the appropriate usage of cell phones.
While the debate continues, parents should always keep in mind the benefits and risks associated with the usage of cell phones. The biggest advantage of giving the cell phone to a child is to know the whereabouts of the child. Thisis the most essentialelement that is thought of while giving the child a new phone. But there are many underlying risks with inappropriate usage of cell phone.
Risks of giving your child a cell phone
Some of the risks are:
It serves as the major source of negative entertainment
It leads to sleep deprivation as childspends most of his time on the cell phone
The child will not be able to concentrate in school. Beyond doubts, the distractions will be more, and it is reflected in the form of poor grades (poor academic performance).
In fact,the child will be isolated from the society, as he spends most of the time on the cell phone.
The child may become the victim of cyber-bullying.
The child is exposed to inappropriate explicit online content, which could negatively influence his character.
Anti-social behavior will be developed. Typical examples include texting or using mobilephone while driving.
If you are worried sick about this, there are a few control mechanisms with which you can protect your child from all the above-mentioned risks . These are:
Provide your child with a feature phone where the information regarding the safety will be guaranteed, but the risk of exposure to other media will be minimal
If your child is using a smartphone, install parental controls on it. Thiswill enable you to get to know about the content to which the child is exposedto.
Dear mom and dad, it’s high time you got your kid a phone. But just before you make that call, ensure you stick to the guidelines in this piece. While we have establishedthat leaving your child with a cell phone comes with serious consequences, you must not fail to appreciate the importance of that decision. Why wait? Be the best parent in the world by buying your kid a cell phone. However, ensure you keep close tabs on what he does with it.