Over half of parents in a report produced by Common Sense Media in 2017 believe that their teens are “addicted” to their digital devices, especially their mobile ones. Typically, teenagers aren’t quick to agree with their parents, especially when it comes to something their brain prefers. The teenage brain is still developing in the frontal lobe including key areas like the prefrontal cortex. When a teen discovers something they like and they really attach to it, it could mean the difference between peace and war for their parent. However, about half of the teenagers included in the study also felt they were “addicted” to their digital devices.
Children have displayed deeply disturbing signs of true addiction to their digital devices. Videos occasionally surface on the internet of the horrifying display of aggressive behavior kids display when their parent takes away their video game subscription, their computer, or some other medium for the digital world. Punishments have shifted from “go to your room” to “no phone, computer, tv, tablet, e-reader,” and another number of devices. Digital interactions have been taken to the extreme of being equated to crack or heroin, drawing kids in. Brian imaging studies have revealed that the brain responds to scrolling through a news feed, getting notifications, and even unlocking the phone is similar to the way it responds to cocaine. Children can stay up all night, attached to their screens. Eyes wide open and unresponsive, their brains are overstimulated with dopamine to a level kids are not supposed to handle. Teenagers are prone to engaging in risky, impulsive, and other concerning behaviors. For teenagers, their attraction to their digital devices serve a different purpose than it might for younger children. Attached to their digital device is access to an entire social world that influences how they see themselves, what they think of themselves, and how they interact at school. Beyond social dynamics, teenagers turn to the mind-numbing effect of engaging with their phone to cope with their emotions. As a result, many teenagers experience a deficit in their emotional resiliency. Depression, body image issues, and eating disorders in teenagers have all been linked to an overuse of digital devices and social media. Not interacting with other people or their natural environment, they lose their sense of empathy and interpersonal relationship.
Stonewater Adolescent Recovery offers a life-cleansing, foundation-building program to adolescent and teenage boys needing clinical care for addiction and/or alcoholism. Located in the remote Mississippi countryside, our beautiful home offers the perfect environment and privacy for total transformation in mind, body, and spirit.
Call us today for information on our programs for treatment and academic support: 662-598-4214