- A study, published in the Journal of Developmental and Behavioural Paediatrics, involved in-depth interviews with 35 caregivers, which included mums, dads and grandmothers.
- Participants expressed an internal struggle between multi-tasking mobile technology use, work and children, and emotional tensions around disrupting family routines.
- Parents also described more attention-seeking behaviour from children when they were heavily attentive to their mobile devices, which prompted negative interactions such as snapping at kids.
- My Medical Mantra has started #NoMobileKnowFamily campaign. According to experts, a ‘gadget-free’ family time is the need of the hour.
Let’s take an example of this young couple from Mumbai. A well-educated and affluent husband, Ravi (name changed) was always busy on his mobile. Even while they were having dinner, he found it extremely difficult to put down his phone. During a heated argument, his wife Shikha (name changed) forcibly took away his phone in rage. The fact that he was forced to stay away from his phone, caused him to slap his wife.
“The real trouble is that we do not realise the amount of time we use the devices. Moreover, the light of the phones have a bad effect on our eyes. A lot of people will even experience trouble in getting sleep after using phones. And that is why, when we treat such patients, we ask them to have ‘gadget-free’ family time,” said Dr Avinash DeSousa, president of DeSousa Foundation.
“For Ravi, we had to treat him by counseling and suggesting gadget-free hours. Such kind of compulsivity is now seen commonly these days due to increasing addiction,” added Dr DeSousa.
Dr Parul Tank, consultant psychiatrist at Asian Heart Institute, Mumbai and Fortis Hospital said, “The only solution is to keep away from mobile phones dedicatedly. But that would mean gadget-free hours for the whole family.”
Speaking about My Medical Mantra’s campaign #NoMobileKnowFamily, celebrities, socialites and politicians have put forth their opinions and have appealed people to opt for a gadget-free’ family time.
Wrestler, actor and a motivational speaker Sangram Singh said, “Today, people are glued to their phones and this can affect their relationships. As, they tend to ignore each other. So, people should avoid using their phones when they are with their family. This will help them to rekindle their relationships and build a stronger bond. Also, the continuous usage of mobile can take a toll on one’s health. Opt for a ‘gadget-free’ family time.”
Actor and comedian Siddharth Jadhav said, “We use our mobile phones to stay connected. We say that we use mobile for work purpose but one has to strike the work-life balance. I am also trying to put down my phone while I am with my family. I would appeal to all, to dedicate and spend a quality time with your family.”
Shaina NC, BJP leader said, “Parents are continuously glued to the mobile phones. Due to which, the child gets neglected. So, parents should limit their mobile usage. Even my son demands attention and asks me to put down my phone. So, we should listen and learn from our kids as well.”
Congress spokesperson Atul Londhe said, “We should live in the real world rather than living in an imaginary world. Play with your child as they are our lifelines. Avoid using phones and pay attention towards your kids and talk to your family members. We should make it a habit.”