Toddlers + iPads = Therapy?

Does giving a toddler an iPad lead to the child requiring therapy?  Some doctors in the UK claimed to have experienced such a phenomenon.  A clinic in London treats people who are addicted to technology.  The clinic's youngest patient is a four year old girl. According to the Telegraph website, her parents enrolled her for compulsive behavior therapy after she became increasingly “distressed and inconsolable” when the iPad was taken away from her.

The child was allowed to use the iPad for up to four hours everyday.  When the device would be taken away, she would become very agitated and throw tantrums.  She would ask for the iPad constantly throughout the day. Doctors suggest that her withdrawal symptoms are similar to those of alcoholics and heroin addicts.

"Parents who have found themselves unable to wean their children off computer games and mobile phones are paying up to £16,000 for a 28-day “digital detox” programme designed by Dr Graham at the Capio Nightingale clinic in London."  That comes to almost $25,000 for therapy for using an iPad or video games!

Most parents are using iPhones, iPads, smart phones and other devices everyday and they introduce these devices to their children at a very early age.  Babies are using iPads and companies are constantly developing products to allow babies to use the devices without destroying them. These products are making it easier for parents to give the devices to their young children to play with.

Is it a good idea to let a child sit for four hours using an iPad?  What is the parent doing while this is happening.  Could you sit and watch someone else use an iPad for four hours?  Probably not.  It seems to me that if your child is using an iPad for four hours, you are not parenting and are using the iPad as your babysitter.

I'm not convinced that children who get upset and act out after having an iPad taken away need therapy.  Maybe they are just acting bratty or maybe they are just acting like toddlers. However, I am convinced that parents who let babies and toddlers use an iPad for four hours deserve to have to deal with the bratty child that they created.
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Filed under: Parenting

Tags: iPad, Parenting, Toddlers

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