5 ways to reduce the impact of screen time

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Looking for ways to help kids spend less time in front of a device? Want to balance the impact that screen time is potentially having on them? Look no further!

Check out our five tips to reduce the impact of screen time on your kids.  

1. Balance the good with the bad.

Not all screen time is created equal. There’s plenty of enriching content that’s only possible with a device, like calls with distant relatives, interactive education apps, or informative videos that show your kids how to interact with or see the world in new ways. Meanwhile, excessive gaming or scrolling on social media can pose issues, like the dopamine hits they get when someone “likes” their photo or when they win points in a game. Talk to your children about the differences between types of screen time, and set guidelines and limits based on what is right for your family. Parental controls, like the ones we have at Aura, can help you choose what apps and websites your kids can use at certain times. 

2. Co-watch with your kids.

Depending on their ages, watch TV or videos with them. Encourage them to interact with content, like singing along or answering questions. Ask about what they’ve seen, how it makes them feel, and more. Help them create a connection between what they’re seeing on a screen and real life. 

3. Set a digital curfew.

A good night’s sleep is essential for healthy brain development, but screens are designed to keep us hooked. Blue lights on our screens can also disrupt our sleep, which can lead kids to not get enough sleep and ultimately affect their behavior and learning.


4. Get outside!

Being outside can improve your concentration, elevate your mood, and boost your overall health, while excessive screen time can impact all three. More than half of teens (56%) admitted feeling lonely, upset, or anxious—when they didn’t have their phone. Time in front of a device replaces physical activity, so for better health and less screen use, take your kids for a walk, bike ride, or another activity that encourages them to enjoy the great outdoors.

5. Set aside time for family.

Schedule some digital device-free times to be together as a family. For example, mealtime can be a great opportunity to create real-life connections with your kids when you can talk with them about their day and even relieve some of the stress and anxiety of navigating life as a kid.

Most experts recommend turning off devices one to two hours before bedtime, but every family is different. No matter what you decide is right for your kids, consistency is key. 

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