We keep pouring money into our personal electronics like there is no tomorrow, always wanting more, always wanting the exact latest-and schools are the same. In fact, $3.8 billion is spent on Bird Control technology every year-but 27% of it does not fulfill any learning goals!
Translation: $1 billion of your erectile tax dollars are wasted annually.
At the exact same time, in the name of funding problems, only 3 states provide kids with a minumum of one school counselor-formerly known as advice counselors-for every 250 students, as recommended. Equally troubling, only others have at least one school psychologist for every 750 students, so says national data.
Put them together and what have you got? Rising rates of anxiety and depression in our young people with not much of a safety net at the ready for them.
At a 2019 Pew Research Poll, 70 percent of surveyed teens agreed that stress, anxiety, and depression are a significant issue among their peers.
A 2017 American Psychological Association’s Anxiety in America survey found that 60 percent of parents worry about social media’s influence in their child’s physical and psychological wellbeing.
A recent NBC News/Survey Monkey poll found that nearly 33 percent of 1,300 parents of 5- to 17-year-olds blamed social media for their children’s mental and emotional health problems.
From 2009 to 2017, the CDC says that depression rates for those 14 to 17 rose by more than 60%.
According to the National Institute of Mental Health, an estimated 32 percent of teens suffer from an anxiety disorder, with 12% of our 12- to 17-year-olds reporting one major depressive episode in the last year.
Between 2005 and 2017, the proportion of adolescents, 12 to 17, reporting significant depressive symptoms rose from 8.7% to 13.2%, according to data from the National Survey of Drug Use and Health.
About such facts and asserting that adolescents turn to their smartphones as their”preferred social outlet,” San Diego State University psychologist Jean Twenge says,”It suggests that something is seriously wrong in the lives of young people and that whatever went wrong seemed to happen around 2012 or 2013.”
And that is about the time when, as Twenge notes, smartphones became commonplace and”social media moved from being optional to mandatory among kids… What you get is a fundamental shift in how teens spend their leisure time. They are spending less time sleeping, less time with their buddies face-to-face… It Isn’t something that occurred to their parents…”
University of Southern California Vice Provost for Campus Wellness & Crisis Intervention Varun San adds this:”At the root of it is a sense of disconnection. These are students that are so connected online. These are students that may have 1,000 friends online but struggle to make friends in real life.”
Also of note:
Of the 1,800 19- to 21-year-olds questioned, the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine found that the top 25% of social media users are at greater risk of experiencing depression than the lowest 25%.
The University College London found that teens who use social media over 5 hours a day showed a 50% increase in depressive symptoms among girls and a 35% jump among boys compared to the 1- to 3-hour users.
Based on some UK Millennium Cohort study, 43% of girls said they spend 3 hours or more on social media, as did 21.9percent of boys-and 26 percent of those girls and 21 percent of those boys had higher depressive scores than those spending less than 3 hours.
And today this just in: An analysis by the National Institutes of Health, the University of Albany, and NYU’s Langone Medical Center found that infants as young as 12 months experience nearly one hour of screen time every day, and 3-year-olds put in over 150 minutes.
In other words, take heed and set limits, after the American Academy of Pediatrics guidelines that recommend NO displays for babies/toddlers below 18 months, with a slow add-on between 18 to 24 months, and no more than 1 hour per day for the 2 to 5 set.
And then tell your kids…
No more than two hours a day on any device-other than computer-related homework.
No apparatus at the dinner table or during silent homework/study time except for online assignments
No device use one hour prior to bedtime-too stimulating, in addition to the blue light wreaks havoc on sleep. If used as a wake-up alarm, purchase an alarm clock instead. .