Editor's Note: More on this topic on KARE 11 News at 10 p.m. on Wednesday Nov. 1. Rena Sarigianopoulos takes a look at tech in schools.
MINNEAPOLIS - It’s fair to say we’ve become a technology driven world. Cell phones, iPads, computers and games dominate our everyday. From work to play there’s no place that technology doesn’t have a hold. Problem is, the same is true for our kids, and that some experts say, really is a problem.
"There's clear clinical and neurological research that shows that these screens are having a pretty significant effect,” says Dr. Nicholas Kardaras.
Dr. Kardaras is a licensed psychotherapist, addiction expert and author of the book “Glow Kids, How Screen Addiction is Hijacking our Kids—and How to Break the Trance.” He’s also a parent. A parent who believes that no child under the age of 10 should have screen time.
“Clinical ages 5 to 10 are much more developmentally vulnerable and fragile because their brains are developing,” says Dr. Kardaras.
And he believes that screen time is having a serious effect on those developing brains. Everything from ADHD to hindered cognitive development and dampened creativity.
“In addition to raising dopamine levels, it has the same effect as chronic cocaine use does, in the way that it shrinks our frontal cortex, known as the executive functioning part of our brain,” says Dr. Kardaras.
Dr. Kardaras sites more than a dozen brain imaging studies for his research. We asked for the studies and he provided them.
“The children are getting hyper-stimulated and when you get hyper-stimulated and hyper-aroused you need to continue to hyper-stimulate or hyper-arouse to maintain their attention. Attention is a developmental muscle that develops at critical periods. If a child during that key developmental window, where we're developing our ability to attend to focus, gets hyper-stimulated by an immersive screen, there is research that shows that the parts of the brain that relate to attention get affected.”
You might be able to control screen time at home, but what about at school? More schools are going to an all-technology, no book education. The technology companies like Apple, Google and Microsoft will tell you it’s making your kids smarter. You might even think that if your school isn’t all technology that your child will end up behind. We explore the issue on Wednesday Nov. 1 on KARE 11 News at 10 p.m.