• In the Loop: Sunshine and summer screen time

a little girl sitting in front of a TV screen
Summer break is underway for most students, which means new (or no) routines. Unfortunately, many kids are spending a bit too much of their newfound free time staring at a screen.

Ah, summer. Blue skies, sunshine and … screen time? If it feels like the online world is more attractive to your child than the outside world, you're not alone. In spite of wonderful weather, "many students have been spending time indoors staring at their smartphones or favorite video games," reports WXOW, a "trend psychologists warn could be dangerous for their development."

The dangers of too much screen time are many and varied, according to our friends at MayoClinic.org, and can include behavioral and sleep problems, obesity and loss of social skills. And while your tween may insist that texting and FaceTiming are keys to staying connected to friends, mental health professionals disagree. "We actually see kids are feeling lonelier and more disconnected and isolated with a stronger reliance on social media interactions," Chelsea Ale, Ph.D., a behavioral health provider at Mayo Clinic Health System — Franciscan Healthcare, tells WXOW. Read the rest of the article.
This story originally appeared on the In the Loop blog.

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