We’re all living in the digital age — but it’s the kids who are going to be shaped the most by it. How will an increasingly connected world affect the youth in the long run? The answers aren’t all known, but it’s worth looking at how kids today behave in the digital era.
Problems in Getting a Good Night’s Sleep
Admit it: Computers are very distracting. Even people who were teenagers a decade ago had the same problem. They get out of bed and resume playing games on their bulky desktop computers. Thus, it’s not a new problem — but it’s evolved. These days, kids have tablets, smartphones, and gaming consoles.
Even if you forbid them from using their laptop or PC late at night, they can just hide under a blanket and use a phone. The sheer convenience of a smartphone makes it difficult to ignore. With a single device, you can play games, watch videos, and chat with your friends in the neighborhood or in school.
What’s worse is that this can affect their performance in school. Staying late up at night won’t give their bodies enough time to recover. In particular, sleep deprivation affects brain cells, which then makes it difficult to perform cognitive functions. Plus, lack of sleep puts kids at risk of several health disorders.
Privacy and Security Issues
It’s great that kids today no longer have to write physical letters and then drop them off to the postal office. But convenience can get dangerous if there aren’t enough security measures. The problem is that kids still don’t know what they should and should not share online — whether in games or social media.
And the thing with the Internet is that once you post something online, it will likely stay there forever. You can delete your kid’s post, but someone may have already taken a screenshot of it. If it’s a sensitive post and it’s spread online, the kid can face ridicule and may develop self-esteem issues in the long run.
Thus, it’s important to teach your kids about online etiquette. Teach them the value of using strong passwords and of changing them every once in a while. Likewise, help them become wary of who they talk to online. Tell them that they should speak out if they sense something wrong.
Utilize encryption features at home. Get a VPN service. You can use iPad to connect to VPN network — most computer devices should easily connect to one. This way, the kids can access the Internet without ill-intentioned entities stealing their data or viewing their browsing activities without permission.
The digital age is beneficial in many ways. A ton of useful information is now just one click away. Likewise, it’s easier to stay connected to family and friends. Still, parents and adults, in general, should do what they can to protect their kids from the negative consequences of computer use.