The Decline of play and your childs mental health

“Today, by at least some estimates, five to eight times as many high school and college students meet the criteria for diagnosis of major depression and/or anxiety disorder as was true half a century or more ago.” (see full article below from Psychology today)

Those numbers are very scary! Our kids are spending more and more time on their phones and iPads then ever before. They “need” them for school “all” their friends have them and get this one, their “summer camp allows them otherwise they would lose half of their campers”. CRAZY!

I recently broke down and got my almost 14 year old daughter a phone+service, yes I was probably the last mom in the “bubble town” I live in that did so. Not only do the kids get the pressure but so do the parents…”your poor daughter, she is the only one of her friends  that doesn’t have a phone”. Whatever….

I always told her once she graduated with great marks from grade 8 and could pay for her phone then she could get one. Well she got the marks and she got the job….so she got the phone 2 few months before graduation because GET THIS one of the families she babysits doesn’t have a home phone so I was stuck. We all feel the pressure.

Here are some ways to minimize the issue:

  1. Set a good example: Monkey See Monkey Do – are you always checking your phone and saying “just a minute” – your kids learn by example
  2. Limit alone time – no more closed door zoning on phone for hours – have a set time they can spend (there are apps to help with this – OUR PACT)
  3. Turn off their service during school hours to limit the temptation
  4. Make sure they have a limit on their account for data
  5. Fill their time with other activities – keep them active.

Devices are here to stay whether we like it or not – it is our job a parents to make sure we monitor the usage and our children more closely in light of the increasing issue of dependence and increase of depression

Full article from Psychology Today

Rates of depression and anxiety among young people in America have been increasing steadily for the past 50 to 70 years. Today, by at least some estimates, five to eight times as many high school and college students meet the criteria for diagnosis of major depression and/or anxiety disorder as was true half a century or more ago. This increased psychopathology is not the result of changed diagnostic criteria; it holds even when the measures and criteria are constant.

The most recent evidence for the sharp generational rise in young people’s depression, anxiety, and other mental disorders comes from a just-released study headed by Jean Twenge at San Diego State University.[1] Twenge and her colleagues took advantage of the fact that the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI), a questionnaire used to assess a variety of mental disorders, has been given to large samples of college students throughout the United States going as far back as 1938, and the MMPI-A (the version used with younger adolescents) has been given to samples of high school students going as far back as 1951. The results are consistent with other studies, using a variety of indices, which also point to dramatic increases in anxiety and depression—in children as well as adolescents and young adults—over the last five or more decades.

READ THE FULL ARTICLE FROM PSYCHOLOGY TODAY

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