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Who said they were reading the book "Glow Kids"?


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#1 mom2scouts

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Posted 11 August 2017 - 09:09 AM

I saw this book mentioned on these forums and then saw it on the shelf at my library the very next day. I started reading it last night and couldn't put it down. One of my older boys fits the category of "didn't fit in and found his group with fantasy gaming". The amount of time he spent gaming became an issue when he was in high school and I can totally see people getting addicted. I've had to pull back on my own use of Facebook because a quick check can turn into hours. My minor children don't have cell phones and can only access the family computer when I log in for them, but this reinforces my thoughts that too much screen time is addictive and negative. The studies about brain changes are very concerning!

 

I'm reading the part where he talks about schools and the thought that it's necessary and educational for all students to have constant access to tech. One of our local schools makes sure all students have Chromebooks and, just as the book says, there seems to be financial incentives for someone to get schools to buy as many as possible. Those who work for tech giants send their own children to Waldorf and Montessori schools because they understand the dangers. I kept thinking about how my oldest child never had access to tech (no TV, no cell phone, no computer, no video games) until probably middle school and he now has a good paying job in tech with an international company. I know we don't need to have our toddlers swiping tablets to compete in the real world! Kids with well developed *brains* are going to do just fine.

 

Has anyone else read this book? Thoughts?



#2 Bluegoat

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Posted 11 August 2017 - 01:17 PM

I remember it being mentioned in the other thread.

 

I have to say it drives me up the wall that they spend money on tech with no evidence that it improves outcomes, while things like music, which do, go by the wayside.

 

The fantasy thing is interesting.  I was a bit like that in middle/high school, and I found my niche with the RPG gamers - but not online.  I think there were some real advantages of that over the online version.


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#3 nixpix5

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Posted 11 August 2017 - 02:02 PM

I haven't read it but am going to. My graduate research for my clinical psychology degree was in video game addiction and have gone on to work with families who are suffering from this. It is near and dear to my heart. When I worked as a neurobiologist I spent most of my time in a lab that looked at drug addiction. I became interested in video game addiction way back then because I saw it happening to people I know. The research done in rats where they blocked the dopamine response and rats no longer became addicted to cocaine started my decade long journey in dopamine system research. Let me tell all who will listen that it is dopamine that causes the addiction, not the drug and video games give a HUGE dopamine payout. To understand just how addicting it is you have to understand the dopamine system which literally acts synergistically with other neurotransmitter systems. Topping out your dopamine and then not having the "fix" causes depression, irritability, lack of focus and so forth because it also effects serotonin, neuroepinephrin and the like.

I worked in a Montessori school with no tech for 3 years. A huge proportion of the student body was kids of people who worked at Microsoft, Amazon and various other tech jobs. I would often so parent workshops specifically on tech exposure and addiction. I was always floored at how many parents had no clue how powerful tech addiction was until there little Johnny, who managed it "fine" as a 10 year old (even though he spent 3 to 4 hours a day on the weekend or more gaming) suddenly at 16 yo was a teen that didn't have hobbies he enjoyed, didn't go out with friends much, had to be poked and prodded to do work and then would put hardly any energy into it, would sneak tech when asked not to, get irritable etc. All signs of a problem. I saw it over and over. Then they would make themselves feel better by saying "all teens went through this" (uhhh, yeah, no they don't). Same cycle over and over and over. These parents would often quickly get them an ADHD diagnosis (which crops up when kids game alot) and when medication didn't fix it they were baffled.

I swear if I had a dollar for every time I saw this happen I would be rich. The social world of RPG are especially problematic for some youth who do not have good social skills or find their popularity online.

I always tell people who let their kids game just make sure you have them in lots of physical activities, hobbies, face to face friend hang outs, and have tech free days in your home. Teach balance. Don't let gaming be their only hobby.
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#4 HoppyTheToad

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Posted 11 August 2017 - 02:15 PM

Then they would make themselves feel better by saying "all teens went through this" (uhhh, yeah, no they don't). Same cycle over and over and over. These parents would often quickly get them an ADHD diagnosis (which crops up when kids game alot) and when medication didn't fix it they were baffled.


On this forum, often when the issue of a teen boy playing too much video games is mentioned, people suggest it might be a result of depression. Could it be? Sure. But rarely does anyone suggest the video games are the cause of depression.

My brother is 31 and is still suffering the consequences of his video game use as a teen. We keep tight limits on screen time for our kids because my oldest has poor self-regulation skills and gets sucked in too easily. My younger son has better self control, fortunately.
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#5 Jean in Newcastle

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Posted 11 August 2017 - 02:26 PM

Ds20 went through a time from about 11 to 16 when he was addicted to computer gaming.  We went cold turkey for awhile and then only allowed computers with no first person shooter games because those were the worst for dopamine release.  He's come full circle to being able to play responsibly on off hours and yet has a good social life and outside hobbies.  He got a job in IT right out of homeschool high school.  I'm sharing this experience to say that these things are real but they can also be managed / recovered from. 


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#6 nixpix5

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Posted 11 August 2017 - 02:32 PM

On this forum, often when the issue of a teen boy playing too much video games is mentioned, people suggest it might be a result of depression. Could it be? Sure. But rarely does anyone suggest the video games are the cause of depression.

My brother is 31 and is still suffering the consequences of his video game use as a teen. We keep tight limits on screen time for our kids because my oldest has poor self-regulation skills and gets sucked in too easily. My younger son has better self control, fortunately.


Depression is often one of the first clinical signs I see. I often ask at intake the number of hours of video games played. I have done this for so many years now though, upon intake of a teen, just by the constellation of symptoms I can tell if gaming is an issue before they say they game. I have said to new teens before things like "so it appears as though you might game a few hours each day. Any truth to that?" I always get the "are you psychic or something" response.

I think the saddest part for me is often these were kids that once had academic passions. Smart kids! Parents will say "he used to love to read, love learning about animals, space" etc etc. They just don't understand that the kids dopamine can no longer maintain an interest in those things because it isn't finely calibrated anymore. It isn't a sensitive enough system anymore. Now it is a system that requires a big dopamine spike to feel motivation towards something and reading a book, writing a story and so forth no longer can do it.

Same exact system that drives all other addiction. I think every single 6th grader should have a semester of neurobiology. Empowering kids with how their receptors and neurotransmitters work in their neurons and how those systems work in concert is the best way to help them make healthy choices. Also teaching them EARLY the signs of tech addiction.
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#7 HoppyTheToad

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Posted 11 August 2017 - 02:38 PM

Why does this seem to be a bigger problem for boys than girls? Are their brains more delicate? Or do girls have the same problems from tech other than video games?
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#8 nixpix5

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Posted 11 August 2017 - 02:41 PM

Ds20 went through a time from about 11 to 16 when he was addicted to computer gaming. We went cold turkey for awhile and then only allowed computers with no first person shooter games because those were the worst for dopamine release. He's come full circle to being able to play responsibly on off hours and yet has a good social life and outside hobbies. He got a job in IT right out of homeschool high school. I'm sharing this experience to say that these things are real but they can also be managed / recovered from.


They absolutely can or I wouldn't have a job ;)

You did exactly what I would tell a parent to do. Recognize it, don't be afraid to regulate it (even though your teen will hate you and lash out like an addict with moody behavior and bargaining) and then after a detox reteach moderation.

Video games and tech are different from drugs as you can remove drugs from the environment but tech is here to stay. Teaching tech consumption like you teach sugar consumption. Moderation and when things are getting out of control, cut back or cut out for a while to regain footing.
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#9 Guinevere

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Posted 11 August 2017 - 02:42 PM

My 12 year old is interested in learning more, but I can only discuss this with her in vague terms. Any book suggestions, nixpix?

Edited to clarify vague terms is only because I'm not well versed in neurobiology.

Edited by Guinevere, 11 August 2017 - 02:43 PM.


#10 nixpix5

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Posted 11 August 2017 - 02:49 PM

Why does this seem to be a bigger problem for boys than girls? Are their brains more delicate? Or do girls have the same problems from tech other than video games?

Well I could explain the brain research on this but it flies in the face of what is being talked about right now and I am pretty sure a guy at Google just got blasted and fired for reporting on the science in a public forum. I am not going there haha.

You will see more boys become addicted. Like you will see more boys with ASD and AD/HD. There is lots of science on this. Some of it is the way boys express certain behaviors but what research on the brain has found is that boys seek adventure more than girls do on average. Girls seek social bonding and like social dynamic learning and social puzzles. Boys like pushing their brains into solving physical world puzzles and competition. Due to the way we now structure childhood, boys are not out fulfilling these adventures in the woods, on their bikes around town with a large swath of time without adults micromanaging their exploration. They seek it in other ways. Intrinsic motivation is primarily built upon a need to feel autonomous (feeling volitional) and a need for feeling competent (feeling effective). It takes hard work IRL to feel this way but it is instantaneous with video games. The payout happens more quickly.

When you look at RPGS to they not only tap into intrinsic motivation but external motivation in the way we know it works in gambling "the rare drop" that propels forward the player.

What was once a group of boys out in the woods trying to figure out how to build a fort with the resources they had on hand or how to catch a snake, now they get together in RPGS or FPS games with headsets to do the same thing. With a much higher dopamine payout because the adventures are grander.

Edited by nixpix5, 11 August 2017 - 03:07 PM.

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#11 nixpix5

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Posted 11 August 2017 - 02:58 PM

My 12 year old is interested in learning more, but I can only discuss this with her in vague terms. Any book suggestions, nixpix?

Edited to clarify vague terms is only because I'm not well versed in neurobiology.


I am going to go look through my bookshelf to see which ones might be geared toward that age. What I do when I get a new group is spend the first couple of weeks doing age appropriate training in the neurobiology of addiction. I have yet to find a resource for kids that I feel does a good job. Starting here with some of the free teen resources in addiction could teach her more about how the motivation and reward system works in our brains.

NIDA for teens or SAHMA offers free curriculums in their store much of the time. It is a good place to start. The APA also has a good deal of resources on this. I will PM you once I look through my resources to see which ones might work.
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#12 whitestavern

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Posted 11 August 2017 - 03:08 PM

I am going to go look through my bookshelf to see which ones might be geared toward that age. What I do when I get a new group is spend the first couple of weeks doing age appropriate training in the neurobiology of addiction. I have yet to find a resource for kids that I feel does a good job. Starting here with some of the free teen resources in addiction could teach her more about how the motivation and reward system works in our brains.

NIDA for teens or SAHMA offers free curriculums in their store much of the time. It is a good place to start. The APA also has a good deal of resources on this. I will PM you once I look through my resources to see which ones might work.

 

Would you PM me as well, please? I have an almost 15 yo that we have had trouble with on and off for a while. We even brought him to a psychologist who dealt with internet addiction who assured us he wasn't addicted, sigh. We do limit his tech, and sometimes he's off it completely for long periods of time. But he's now at brick and mortar school with no books, only iPads, and the problem is once again challenging. Would love any resources for him and/or us. I would so appreciate anything helpful.



#13 nixpix5

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Posted 11 August 2017 - 03:18 PM

Would you PM me as well, please? I have an almost 15 yo that we have had trouble with on and off for a while. We even brought him to a psychologist who dealt with internet addiction who assured us he wasn't addicted, sigh. We do limit his tech, and sometimes he's off it completely for long periods of time. But he's now at brick and mortar school with no books, only iPads, and the problem is once again challenging. Would love any resources for him and/or us. I would so appreciate anything helpful.

You bet. Research takes time to catch up with reality. I have been at this as both a researcher and a therapist for a long time. 15 years ago I felt like Cassandra in a Greek myth (she would always be telling people predictions and nobody would listen or understand) and I felt so vindicated once other people started to also publish their research. Part of it just comes from people not understanding neurobiology. People often cannot get that you don't have to put any chemical in your body to alter brain function.

We are wired to want food, water, sex etc. Our systems are designed in a way that when we find "food" and it doesn't poison us we get a dopamine kick to encode in our brain that we want to come back to this place for this food in the future. If we don't get food, it makes us sick etc then our dopamine drops and stress hormones kick up so on and so forth. This is our basic caveman style brain responses exactly like other living creatures on the planet.

However, we are unique in that we now use our motivation and reward systems for all sorts of things. They were never really meant to be driven in the way we drive them and it results in a high level of various addictons and mental illness when out of whack. Tech is new territory. Television isn't great for our brains either and they have altered generations but we are spectators with television. It is a moving story that we are using our social brains to dissect and predict with as we watch. Video games are immersive. A completely different area of the brain gets brought in when gaming. One more tethered to reality as we are actively taking part in the experience from our own perspective. We are "hunting and gathering" in virtual world and time. Completely different.

ETA: find a therapist trained in tech addiction. Many therapists just open the DSM and try to fit them into a category that doesn't work well for video game addiction. People with years of experience have learned the nuances of this type of issue and can better support you. It makes me crazy when a therapist reverse treats.

What I mean is, a kid comes in with gaming addition symptoms or at least problematic playing that could lead that route. They treat for ADHD, depression, anxiety etc and fail to see that those are all symptoms of gaming. People just don't know the science and don't know the research. You need someone versed in both. They exist. It does a huge disservice to the family.

Edited by nixpix5, 11 August 2017 - 03:23 PM.

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#14 Bluegoat

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Posted 11 August 2017 - 05:14 PM

Why does this seem to be a bigger problem for boys than girls? Are their brains more delicate? Or do girls have the same problems from tech other than video games?

 

My impression is that girls are more likely to have problems with social media.

 

My 12 year old is interested in learning more, but I can only discuss this with her in vague terms. Any book suggestions, nixpix?

Edited to clarify vague terms is only because I'm not well versed in neurobiology.

 

 

I gave my dd12 the article that was posted the other day here.  



#15 mom2scouts

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Posted 11 August 2017 - 05:19 PM

I just realized that one of the most popular public charter high schools in my area is a STEM school that provides all lessons and homework on tablets and computers. There are NO real books in the classroom. Even more concerning is that they are opening a middle school this year and the all-tech educational model is being pushed down to younger kids in the classroom. I have a friend who was a preschool teacher for 40 years.  She said she was seeing the effects of too much screen time and children were very different than children she had seen in the past. Some would wander around the room not knowing how to play with the creative and make believe toys in her classroom. Others spent so much time using tablets that they had little core strength and large muscle strength. She retired a few years ago, but not before warning parents to cut back.

'



#16 whitestavern

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Posted 11 August 2017 - 05:44 PM

 

Sorry, DP


Edited by whitestavern, 11 August 2017 - 05:46 PM.

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#17 whitestavern

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Posted 11 August 2017 - 05:45 PM

You bet. Research takes time to catch up with reality. I have been at this as both a researcher and a therapist for a long time. 15 years ago I felt like Cassandra in a Greek myth (she would always be telling people predictions and nobody would listen or understand) and I felt so vindicated once other people started to also publish their research. Part of it just comes from people not understanding neurobiology. People often cannot get that you don't have to put any chemical in your body to alter brain function.

We are wired to want food, water, sex etc. Our systems are designed in a way that when we find "food" and it doesn't poison us we get a dopamine kick to encode in our brain that we want to come back to this place for this food in the future. If we don't get food, it makes us sick etc then our dopamine drops and stress hormones kick up so on and so forth. This is our basic caveman style brain responses exactly like other living creatures on the planet.

However, we are unique in that we now use our motivation and reward systems for all sorts of things. They were never really meant to be driven in the way we drive them and it results in a high level of various addictons and mental illness when out of whack. Tech is new territory. Television isn't great for our brains either and they have altered generations but we are spectators with television. It is a moving story that we are using our social brains to dissect and predict with as we watch. Video games are immersive. A completely different area of the brain gets brought in when gaming. One more tethered to reality as we are actively taking part in the experience from our own perspective. We are "hunting and gathering" in virtual world and time. Completely different.

ETA: find a therapist trained in tech addiction. Many therapists just open the DSM and try to fit them into a category that doesn't work well for video game addiction. People with years of experience have learned the nuances of this type of issue and can better support you. It makes me crazy when a therapist reverse treats.

What I mean is, a kid comes in with gaming addition symptoms or at least problematic playing that could lead that route. They treat for ADHD, depression, anxiety etc and fail to see that those are all symptoms of gaming. People just don't know the science and don't know the research. You need someone versed in both. They exist. It does a huge disservice to the family.

 

Thank you so much. That is fascinating reading. It's sad to me that people will be adversely affected by tech. Dh and I talk all the time about how different our childhoods were. We'd literally leave our home in the morning (summertime) and come back at dinner. I tried and was mostly successful in giving that to my kids -- homeschooling helped -- at least until they were in high school.

 

We did see a therapist who specialized in tech addiction, Dr. David Greenfield, who said he was an awesome kid and didn't think he had any addictive tendencies. How would one go about finding a good therapist?

 

ETA: He is an awesome kid  :)


Edited by whitestavern, 11 August 2017 - 05:54 PM.


#18 SamanthaCarter

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Posted 12 August 2017 - 07:47 AM

I am going to go look through my bookshelf to see which ones might be geared toward that age. What I do when I get a new group is spend the first couple of weeks doing age appropriate training in the neurobiology of addiction. I have yet to find a resource for kids that I feel does a good job. Starting here with some of the free teen resources in addiction could teach her more about how the motivation and reward system works in our brains.

NIDA for teens or SAHMA offers free curriculums in their store much of the time. It is a good place to start. The APA also has a good deal of resources on this. I will PM you once I look through my resources to see which ones might work.


Sounds like you need to write this!


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#19 nixpix5

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Posted 12 August 2017 - 09:13 AM

Sounds like you need to write this!


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I always tell my husband we need to team up on this one ;)

I thought I would put this link here for anyone who would like to start giving their kids more neurobiology exposure. This is a fun site with lots of information and activities for kids.

http://faculty.washi...ler/neurok.html

The only way to fully understand tech struggles is to have a grasp of neurobiology. Doesn't hurt to start laying the basics early!
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#20 debi21

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Posted 12 August 2017 - 04:01 PM

Do you think, for children who are susceptible to this kind of video game addiction, that television watching is less damaging (particularly if it is educational tv)?

 

And is cold turkey better or trying to teach moderation? Is cold turkey possible or realistic once a child knows they like this type of thing? Is an hour a day several days a week preferable to one day a week for several hours or vice versa?

 

I have so many questions about this. I think our family is prone to this, including me, my husband, and my kids. My 8 yo wrote an answer to describing his perfect day "24 hours of video games." I will definitely be looking for this book.


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#21 nixpix5

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Posted 12 August 2017 - 04:41 PM

Do you think, for children who are susceptible to this kind of video game addiction, that television watching is less damaging (particularly if it is educational tv)?

And is cold turkey better or trying to teach moderation? Is cold turkey possible or realistic once a child knows they like this type of thing? Is an hour a day several days a week preferable to one day a week for several hours or vice versa?

I have so many questions about this. I think our family is prone to this, including me, my husband, and my kids. My 8 yo wrote an answer to describing his perfect day "24 hours of video games." I will definitely be looking for this book.


Television can be abused but it doesn't seem to have the same outcome for people that gaming does. Part of this is like I explained above, television and video games trigger different areas of the brain. The immersiveness of video games seems to code in the brain the same way reality codes. Scary right?

Cold turkey, or a period of cold turkey is often necessary to reset the brain. Dopamine receptors will increase again and dopamine levels will return to normal sensitivity with time.

If someone is, in the true sense or the word, addicted to video games though what tends to happen is what happens with drugs. When they return to using again the moderation isn't maintained and they return to extreme use again. Kids that are just showing some effects of tech can usually learn to moderate with solid boundaries from parents.

If grades are suffering, the child is rushing through work to get to tech, lying about doing work, unfocused, distracted etc then only allow tech on weekends. Maintain no more than 2 to 3 hours max of tech per day on weekends even if no playing is happening during the week days.

I would say no more than 2. Kids will kick, bargain, give the silent treatment, let it be known how unfair it is. They will make deals that they will do what is expected (homework, chores, time with family etc) for more time. This never goes well. Hold the line.

If your kids are younger you have time to get control of it. Teen years is often when it unravels.

I would never allow tech in the bedroom. Keep it in the common area. Once tech leaves your site it is much harder to reign in once you need to.

My other word of advice is never use external motivators/star charts and incentives for kids slacking off due to tech. Tech kills internal motivation and so does external rewards. It is ingrained in our society to use external rewards and it has long term negative effects.

You can google intrinsic motivation and external rewards and get enough research to read to help you understand why this is. I will give you a fun analogy though:

One day a man looked out on his lawn to see all of the kids in his neighborhood playing in his yard. Every day it was the same way. He told them to leave, asked them nicely but without fail they would end up in his large yard. One day he decides to pay them. He went out and offered them 5 dollars a piece to play in his yard. They were so excited. Every day they showed up and every day he paid them. The next week he paid them 3 dollars. Some of the kids stopped coming but some returned. The next week he paid them a dollar. Again, some didn't come back but a couple did. The next week he didn't pay them. They never came back.
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#22 busymama7

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Posted 12 August 2017 - 04:50 PM

Do you see the same patterned with social media and/or phones? What do you suggest when going cold turkey isn't a option like it is for games?

#23 nixpix5

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Posted 12 August 2017 - 05:00 PM

Do you see the same patterned with social media and/or phones? What do you suggest when going cold turkey isn't a option like it is for games?


This is my new passion actually. I have been researching and working in addiction for so long that I feel very confident treating gaming addiction and even drug addiction. Social media has become a whole other level.

This is hurting a new group; girls. It was rare for a girl to land in my office with a game addiction. In 10 years there has only been 2. Social media addiction is now changing that.

For girls their fragile self worth is tied closely to the image they project and the responses they get on social media. Thumbs up can cause a burst of dopamine while a picture or post going without any clicks can deeply wound a girl and cause them to turn in emotionally. It truly effects their sense of self.

This does happen with boys too but much like any bell curve, not to the same extent as girls.

My recommendation is an unpopular one. I don't think teens under 16 yo should be on social media and only highly responsible teens should ever be given a phone with internet capabilites. This has come from years of seeing fallout of social media for kids.

Once they get social media be part of their page. Keep them honest and respectful. Talk to them about being true to themselves. Remind them that future colleges and employers will be looking.

I do. I used to check my counseling teams social media before hiring them and would periodically check it there after. They were working with my students and I needed to make sure they were stable people.

I would not let cell phones into the bedroom past a certain time and if you see a student on the phone constantly then shorten the duration.

Talk at length with your young people about the implications of tech. Get informed, read and do research. Having that info will keep you communicating with your child.
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#24 busymama7

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Posted 12 August 2017 - 05:53 PM

This is my new passion actually. I have been researching and working in addiction for so long that I feel very confident treating gaming addiction and even drug addiction. Social media has become a whole other level.

This is hurting a new group; girls. It was rare for a girl to land in my office with a game addiction. In 10 years there has only been 2. Social media addiction is now changing that.

For girls their fragile self worth is tied closely to the image they project and the responses they get on social media. Thumbs up can cause a burst of dopamine while a picture or post going without any clicks can deeply wound a girl and cause them to turn in emotionally. It truly effects their sense of self.

This does happen with boys too but much like any bell curve, not to the same extent as girls.

My recommendation is an unpopular one. I don't think teens under 16 yo should be on social media and only highly responsible teens should ever be given a phone with internet capabilites. This has come from years of seeing fallout of social media for kids.

Once they get social media be part of their page. Keep them honest and respectful. Talk to them about being true to themselves. Remind them that future colleges and employers will be looking.

I do. I used to check my counseling teams social media before hiring them and would periodically check it there after. They were working with my students and I needed to make sure they were stable people.

I would not let cell phones into the bedroom past a certain time and if you see a student on the phone constantly then shorten the duration.

Talk at length with your young people about the implications of tech. Get informed, read and do research. Having that info will keep you communicating with your child.


Thank you. We have already decided no social media until at least 16 for our younger ones(we already don't allow phones until 16 but we allowed iPod touches younger. We won't make that mistake again as mad as its making our current tween girl) but we have older teens and young adults living with us too. And to be honest, I am struggling myself. Enough that I want to chuck the phone but I can't actually do that.

#25 Barb_

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Posted 12 August 2017 - 06:47 PM

Thank you. We have already decided no social media until at least 16 for our younger ones(we already don't allow phones until 16 but we allowed iPod touches younger. We won't make that mistake again as mad as its making our current tween girl) but we have older teens and young adults living with us too. And to be honest, I am struggling myself. Enough that I want to chuck the phone but I can't actually do that.


An iPod touch was just a phone that didn't make calls. Some of my kids' friends at 11 and 12 had iPod touches that they used for texting and instagram...I never understood that. Please read my tone and curious and confused rather than snarky. What is the thinking there?

#26 Barb_

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Posted 12 August 2017 - 06:51 PM

My son has my old iPhone but I've locked it down. Parent controls are pretty powerful. I was able to remove web browsers, adding apps (even free ones), social media, Netflix, etc. He had no games. He uses it to text his grown sisters and other family, to call me if he gets a flat tire on his bike or something a mile or so from home, as a calculator, for audiobooks, an alarm clock, as a dictionary.... So in case anyone is wondering, it's possible to have all of the advantages of tech without any of the drawbacks.
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#27 Barb_

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Posted 12 August 2017 - 06:54 PM

Nixpix5, thank you for all of your posts on this topic. These are thoughts I've had for some time and it's good to hear them validated by a professional.
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#28 busymama7

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Posted 12 August 2017 - 07:16 PM

An iPod touch was just a phone that didn't make calls. Some of my kids' friends at 11 and 12 had iPod touches that they used for texting and instagram...I never understood that. Please read my tone and curious and confused rather than snarky. What is the thinking there?


Well it was locked so they couldn't do much as you said below and we didn't allow social media or web browsing. They could text though and load some games and apps. At the time it seemed a good compromise as we really couldn't afford to add more phones to our plan and they paid 100% of of the cost and there was no ongoing expense. It also limited when/where they could use it much as they needed wifi. Again, we realized it still caused more problems then we wanted so the younger ones won't be allowed one.

Edited by busymama7, 12 August 2017 - 07:20 PM.


#29 Barb_

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Posted 12 August 2017 - 07:21 PM

Well it was locked so they couldn't do much as you said below and we didn't allow social media or web browsing. They could text though and load some games and apps. At the time it seemed a good compromise as we really couldn't afford to add more phones to our plan and they paid 100% of of the cost and there was no ongoing expense. It also limited when/where they could use it much as they needed wifi. Again, we realized it still caused more problems then we wanted so the younger ones won't be allowed one.


Got it. So it was a muddle along thing :)

#30 busymama7

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Posted 12 August 2017 - 07:41 PM

Got it. So it was a muddle along thing :)


Pretty much that :). I was hesitant at the time but they earned the money and .... Yeah. I keep telling my younger kids that they usually get the advantages of being at the end and parents with more lax standards but in this case it's totally the opposite. I'm even considering no social media until they leave home/18 but they do need a phone once they drive.

Edited by busymama7, 12 August 2017 - 07:41 PM.


#31 nixpix5

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Posted 12 August 2017 - 07:48 PM

Pretty much that :). I was hesitant at the time but they earned the money and .... Yeah. I keep telling my younger kids that they usually get the advantages of being at the end and parents with more lax standards but in this case it's totally the opposite. I'm even considering no social media until they leave home/18 but they do need a phone once they drive.


I am right there with you. My kids have access to typing instructor, piano wizard, kodable and rosetta korean. I allow that to be their only computer access. Each one is done only one day a week. They have never played video games. We play board games around here :) My tech addicted 10 year old niece didn't know how to act for the 2 weeks she was with us with no tech. The first week was hard for her and she wandered around, not sure what to do. Second week she was settling in. I wish I could have had her longer to free her brain :)

I have been teaching my kids basic neuroscience so they know how their brains works and understand why we are post poning tech until after their brains prune. I will teach them programming, excel, and PowerPoint...the basics but I see no real benefit to anything else for them outside of this before 16 yo.
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#32 Pen

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Posted 12 August 2017 - 10:38 PM

I saw it on thread about smartphones, an just started reading it today!  Too soon for me to discuss, but I am fascinated so far.

 

 


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#33 Jean in Newcastle

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Posted 12 August 2017 - 11:36 PM

I don't regret having tech in our life. Yes, there was an imbalance. We dealt with it. But tech has benefited our life by helping us to study and learn and explore and keep in touch and even to play.

I said this on the Smartphone thread and I say it here. I think that people should do what fits their family's needs. At any stage or situation. But I am not a super black and white person. I prefer to respond to each person's needs as an individual.


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#34 Monica_in_Switzerland

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Posted 13 August 2017 - 04:01 AM

nixpix5, your contributions on this thread have been extremely interesting and thought-provoking... thank you!  


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#35 mom2scouts

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Posted 13 August 2017 - 09:23 AM

nixpix5, I was also going to tell you I'm so glad you posted in this thread. My kids already get much less screen time than most of their friends and I'm considering restricting it more after what I've been reading. My kids get *really annoying* when they've had too much screen time and I already knew that sometimes they need a detox from it. I'm starting to understand why.


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#36 nixpix5

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Posted 13 August 2017 - 09:32 AM

I don't regret having tech in our life. Yes, there was an imbalance. We dealt with it. But tech has benefited our life by helping us to study and learn and explore and keep in touch and even to play.

I said this on the Smartphone thread and I say it here. I think that people should do what fits their family's needs. At any stage or situation. But I am not a super black and white person. I prefer to respond to each person's needs as an individual.


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I agree with you. I think tech has added many amazing things to the world. Case in point as I sit here and type on my phone to you lovely people :)

The way you handled the balance with your DS was great. You recognized it and set limits. You protected him and helped him learn to regulate.

This is the way to do it if it is possible for the young person. Some people have more of a predisposition to addiction and it is much more challenging if not impossible. Like you said, it is really individually based.

I am only speaking from a place of seeing so many good families brought down by it. As fun as it is people need to assess their own families and make decisions.
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#37 Pen

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Posted 13 August 2017 - 11:27 AM

This was initially written as a reply to a quote from a message about Silicon Valley people sending their kids to schools that don't go in for electronics so much, but I can't make the quote function work right now.   I got an email forwarded to me that seems related to this. I hope it is okay to copy it below.  (It included links to the show and the whole transcript of a 60 Minutes interview which I have not copied--or at least tried not to).

 

Another book that may be of interest (like Glow Kids, I found it extremely fascinating and well written) along these lines is The Invisible Rainbow by Arthur Firstenberg (may be OOP or hard to find), with a lot of history on electricity, especially electricity and health.  I would be concerned that even though many of us believe that we can use these devices (including the one I am now using) safely, in moderation, as useful tools--we may be deluding ourselves, and if someone could do scans on our brains etc. it might be the case that we are being affected without realizing it.  Many of us have health issues, and some of us really don't know for sure that electricity in general, or electronic devices in particular have no effect on that....that is on parts of us other than our brains.

 

edit to try to make clear that the whole part below is being quoted:

 

 

"I think that it is really important for people to realize that smart phones and tablets and all the apps for them have been deliberately designed to be addicting.  So the fact that many grown-ups and children exhibit classic signs of addiction should not come as a surprise.  Many other nations are taking precautionary action (http://ehtrust.org/p...ns-on-wireless/), the U.S. ought to be as well. 
 
[snip]
 
Protecting my health and that of others by using a hardwired computer in a low RF environment.  For more information, seewww.electricalpollution.com  

 

In case you missed it,  60 Minutes aired a segment on how social media and smart phone apps are “purposely designed to be habit-forming”.  You can read and see the entire Sunday, April 9, 2017, show below.  When watching, consider the implications for children. Educational software, video games and screens are increasingly being promoted in schools, even marketed to small children.   Are parents and administrators aware of the dangers of these 1:1 devices?

"In this 60 Minutes piece, Anderson Cooper asks, Is Silicon Valley programming apps or are they programming people? According to a former Google product manager, Silicon Valley  is engineering your phone to get you hooked, feel the need to check in constantly.

 

Smartphones are becoming a habit with many people and it’s all by design says a former Google product manager, Tristan Harris.  He tells Anderson Cooper the apps and content — especially social media — carried on phones are purposely designed to be habit-forming.  Cooper’s story also explores the brain science that explains how people are so susceptible to what some programmers call “brain hacking.” 

 
 
[snip]

 


Edited by Pen, 13 August 2017 - 12:18 PM.

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#38 Bluegoat

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Posted 13 August 2017 - 11:36 AM

 

This was initially written as a reply to a quote from a message about Silicon Valley people sending their kids to schools that don't go in for electronics so much, but I can't make the quote function work right now.   I got an email forwarded to me that seems related to this. I hope it is okay to copy it below.  (It included links to the show and the whole transcript of a 60 Minutes interview which I have not copied--or at least tried not to).

 

Another book that may be of interest (like Glow Kids, I found it extremely fascinating and well written) along these lines is The Invisible Rainbow by Arthur Firstenberg (may be OOP or hard to find), with a lot of history on electricity, especially electricity and health.  I would be concerned that even though many of us believe that we can use these devices (including the one I am now using) safely, in moderation, as useful tools--we may be deluding ourselves, and if someone could do scans on our brains etc. it might be the case that we are being affected without realizing it.  Many of us have health issues, and some of us really don't know for sure that electricity in general, or electronic devices in particular have no effect on that....that is on parts of us other than our brains.

 

 

I think that it is really important for people to realize that smart phones and tablets and all the apps for them have been deliberately designed to be addicting.  So the fact that many grown-ups and children exhibit classic signs of addiction should not come as a surprise.  Many other nations are taking precautionary action (http://ehtrust.org/p...ns-on-wireless/), the U.S. ought to be as well. 
 
[snip]
 
Protecting my health and that of others by using a hardwired computer in a low RF environment.  For more information, seewww.electricalpollution.com  

 

In case you missed it,  60 Minutes aired a segment on how social media and smart phone apps are “purposely designed to be habit-forming”.  You can read and see the entire Sunday, April 9, 2017, show below.  When watching, consider the implications for children. Educational software, video games and screens are increasingly being promoted in schools, even marketed to small children.   Are parents and administrators aware of the dangers of these 1:1 devices?

"In this 60 Minutes piece, Anderson Cooper asks, Is Silicon Valley programming apps or are they programming people? According to a former Google product manager, Silicon Valley  is engineering your phone to get you hooked, feel the need to check in constantly.

 

Smartphones are becoming a habit with many people and it’s all by design says a former Google product manager, Tristan Harris.  He tells Anderson Cooper the apps and content — especially social media — carried on phones are purposely designed to be habit-forming.  Cooper’s story also explores the brain science that explains how people are so susceptible to what some programmers call “brain hacking.” 

 
 
[snip]

 

 

Yes, this.

 

There is all kinds of research around ways to keep people playing endlessly, from the gambling industry.  This is why you get so any problems with the video gambling machines.


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#39 Hilltopmom

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Posted 13 August 2017 - 12:04 PM

Nixpix5-

Do you know of any good resources (I prefer books) for parents to help teens with video game addictions?

Our area has very few mental health providers with a year long waiting list, so getting professional help is unlikely.

Also, in your opinion, can a kid overcome this and then go on to have a degree & career in computer science, or will the computer video games always call too strongly to them?

Thank you.
Eta- I was looking at this site & the books they have. Nothing looks decent on Amazon.
http://www.techaddic...tion_books.html

Edited by Hilltopmom, 13 August 2017 - 12:38 PM.


#40 Pen

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Posted 13 August 2017 - 12:32 PM

what do you all think about having a teen read Glow Kids him/herself?

 

 

I just put a pre-order for the paperback version in my e-cart thinking to give one to our local school principal.



#41 nixpix5

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Posted 13 August 2017 - 04:44 PM

Nixpix5-

Do you know of any good resources (I prefer books) for parents to help teens with video game addictions?

Our area has very few mental health providers with a year long waiting list, so getting professional help is unlikely.

Also, in your opinion, can a kid overcome this and then go on to have a degree & career in computer science, or will the computer video games always call too strongly to them?

Thank you.
Eta- I was looking at this site & the books they have. Nothing looks decent on Amazon.
http://www.techaddic...tion_books.html


That is an interesting looking resource. I am going to order it so I can read through it. I haven't seen it before.

I will PM you a few other possible resources.

Yes, I fully believe young people can overcome the addictive pull and go on to have very good careers. The only caveat is once they have a family, they will want to be aware of work/life balance so that their work doesn't become all consuming.

If a child is interested in a career in tech then you can start orienting them away from game playing and toward more programming activities. It is true that if someone wants to be a game designer or programmer they need to know the market, know game playing and what is and isn't successful. For young kids though, they don't need to be playing a ton of games. My best friend's husband is a successful game designer and has helped create a number of games that are hugely popular. He never played video games before going into the field. While he is a game designer, he too recognizes the issue with too much tech and limits his own kids. He and I have the best conversations :)

Code.org, scratch, kodable and many other great programs are a good focus. For teens there is so many more programs. I wouldn't want to rob a child of their dream, but knowing when their focus is more fun than actually learning the trade is something to keep an eye on.

My daughter is a great reader but I won't let her sit around reading twaddle all day. I focus her innate skill so she grows and gains more from her time spent. The same can be done with computers.

I know quite a few young people who I once counseled when they were in high school for tech struggles, that now work for tech companies successfully. It is very possible.

The most important part is making sure your child has other hobbies, IRL friends, and isn't exhibiting signs of too much tech that are bleeding into their other studies.
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#42 Hilltopmom

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Posted 14 August 2017 - 06:49 AM

Thank you, I'll look for your PM.

#43 Pen

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Posted 15 August 2017 - 04:20 PM

The part on Columbia University study and research in some other countries on electromagnetic fields causing DNA damage is very worrisome.  That would affect everyone even if they do not feel addicted or like it is bothering them.

 

 I also did not know that laptops and smaller devices were worse in EMF regard than a desktop device would be.

 

I think I want to much more limit my own use, let alone dc use.



#44 busymama7

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Posted 15 August 2017 - 06:01 PM

I just picked up this book from the library today and only in the first chapter. On the one hand, I am grateful that we are not anywhere near as bad off as some of the kids he describes. That level of addiction to gaming just saddens me. On the other hand, it sharpens my resolve to stay the course with our children.