Essay Sample on Technology and Mental Health: Effects on Children

Paper Type:  Presentation
Pages:  5
Wordcount:  1335 Words
Date:  2023-01-03


Technology is defined as the advancements of computers and any machinery, it has been an issue of concern over the years because of the effects it has on the life of users. The use of screen devices has been related to several mental problems. Children are among the victims affected by the use of devices such as computers and mobile phones for long hours (Palfrey, 2010). Children grow in an environment full of technological advancements; this was not the case with the past days when people lived without screens. The negative effects that have been associated with the use of computers have led to the discussions on restriction for children as this context entails.

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This topic is important because it has been connected by several researchers to the functions of the mind and sleep. The cognitive function which is required when children grow up is suspected to be affected when children keep using the computers and screen devices for more than an hour in a day. The habit of spending more time in front of screens has also been associated with lower thinking capabilities. When children spend their time watching screens, they do not get time to exercise the function of thought; hence will not grow thoughtful from the mind.

Language and memory are other reasons why this topic has been of much importance in explaining why children should be regulated (Palfrey, 2010). The overuse of the technological devices for so long makes children be in a position that they are not able to practice the use of memory and learn the language. There are some other things which have been associated with the use of the internet, such include addiction and sleep pattern interference. Children are expected to sleep for up to eleven hours per day so as to grow healthier.

History and Impacts

The internet is one of the advancements that have been identified to cause harm to the lives of children as they grow. The use of the internet has been associated with the above-discussed issue in children. The internet can be a source of entertainment but what is not noticed by many is that too much time spent in entertainment form the internet affects mind functions such as creativity. Since the discovery of the internet in the year 1990, there have been measures aimed at preventing illicit content from reaching the children, the same was done to identify the maximum time that children should spend in front of screens (Livingstone, 2003).

According to Livingstone (2003), the use of the internet by children is an issue that ignited discussions which attracted research. More people were involved in research to find the reason as to why children should be regulated in the use of the internet. During this time, the use of the internet was not an issue that was accepted by other people to be true; the social media had not taken over the internet during the 1990s (Livingstone, 2003). More people panicked while trying to regulate the use of the internet for an issue such as pornography which looked misleading to children.

The Canadian Media Awareness was among the groups who conducted research in the United States to explain why people had to consider the effect of the internet. There was a research which included parents in identifying the things that were to be achieved so that children could be protected as they used the internet. During the year 1998, the United States had passed a law to protect the rights of children (Livingstone, 2003). The law which was called The Child Online Protection Act was to protect children from gaining access to information that was identified to be misleading to them (Hick & Halpin, 2001).

The use of social media by children is an issue that has been identified to cause trauma in the lives of children. Children who are exposed to some internet contents such as pornography are at risk of being harassed or even threatened. The internet can use children to benefit the selfish people who do not care for children. The issue of cyberbullying which came with social media has been identified to make many children have suicidal thoughts. The suicidal thoughts come from the violation of the privacy of children, mostly the age of eleven to twenty.

Cultural Impacts

Exposure of misleading content to children is also bound to affect the common ethical culture that should be adopted by children (DiMaggio et al, 2001). The digital era has made more children to spend their time in social media; this has made them retrain the mind and avoiding enough sleep. Lack of enough sleep makes children lose some mental capabilities such as critical thought. The children end up not memorizing things that they are thought, some of them adopt funny cultural habits such as aggressiveness.

The children who are exposed to cyberbullying tend to develop stress and depression. The victims tend to live a life of denial since they feel they are not part of the community. The children can sometimes hide from people to the extent of not having friends as they had at some point of life. When this condition comes into the life of children, the children begin to wish they were dead. Such can be prevented by governmental measures. The governments have tried to prevent it but much is required.

Policy Impacts

Implementation of policies can help in solving the problem. There should be policies which regulate the conduct of children (Roby & White, 2010). When parents are made aware of the effects of the internet to their children, they will agree to abide by the country's policies which have been passed. Proper implementation of the policies can help in preventing adults from taking advantage of children to have their selfish plans accomplished. More research is important in confirming that children are affected in terms of thought, memory, language or cognitive function. It is the role of parents to work within the guidelines to ensure success.

Conclusion and Future Impacts

To sum up, the internet trends have made most features to be implemented hence making the use of the internet more fun. From the history and impacts that have been explained, the future can be seen to be headed in the worst direction. This condition, therefore, requires the involvement of regulatory bodies and scientists to work for the wellbeing of children. There is a need to formulate more strict laws, parents need to be made aware of the effects that are bound to happen to children when exposed to technology in the early stages of life. The awareness of parents can serve best in making them contribute towards the prevention of the conditions that may affect the lifestyles of the future generations which may be characterized by unethical conduct.


DiMaggio, P., Hargittai, E., Neuman, W., & Robinson, J. (2001). Social Implications of the Internet. Annual Review of Sociology,27, 307-336.

Hick, S., & Halpin, E. (2001). Children's Rights and the Internet. The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, 575, 56-70.

Livingstone S (2013) Knowledge enhancement. The risks and opportunities of evidence-based policy. In: O'Neill B, Staksrud E and McLaughlin S (eds) Towards a Better Internet for Children? European Policy Pillars, Players, and Paradoxes. Goteborg: Nordicom, 93-109.

Palfrey, J. (2010). Four Phases of Internet Regulation. Social Research, 77(3), 981-996.

Roby, J., & White, H. (2010). Adoption Activities on the Internet: A Call for Regulation. Social Work, 55(3), 203-212.

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