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How too much screen time affects the brain

How too much screen time effects the...

SPOKANE, Wash. - The digital world has taken over.

Almost everyone you meet has at least one social media account.

But what kind of effect does media usage have on our brains?

Not only is constant phone usage hijacking our brain and causing major problems with executive functions like how to make good decisions; social media applications like Instagram are leaving young women with body image issues.

Experts are encouraging parents to start cracking down and monitoring their children's screen time

Counselor Kevin Roberts says parents need to consider screen use at each age. For example, for children under the age of 7, screen time should be extremely limited and not used as a babysitter.

In order for children to be able to use technology, parents should require outdoor activities, sports and good performance in school as requirements.

Roberts adds, “as parents you have to regulate the cell phones and most cell phone companies have options that allow you from your phone or computer to access accounts and specify parameters to help you do just that.”

Try creating a tech-free room in your house, phone free meals and ban cell phones from bedrooms.

“Cell phones had an 11:00 pm curfew and I encouraged face to face time,” said Jim Zoesch, a Spokane father who didn't let his teenagers go to bed with their phones.

So how do you know if your child is using the phone too much? Experts use the same tools used to identify other types of addiction.

Nicholas Kardaras, an addiction expert explains, “Is it negatively impacting their lives? Their school. Are their academics beginning to suffer? Are interpersonal relationships beginning to suffer. Hygiene? Are they not involved in activities they used to love as much?”