Children who use smartphones for long are likely to develop ADHD – Study

Children who spend hours staring at screens every day are more badly behaved by the time they are five, a study has claimed.

Pre-school children who use smartphones, tablets and other gadgets for more than two hours a day are also seven times more likely to develop ADHD.

The screen time has a ‘significant impact’ on the child’s development, researchers said as they warned parents need to cut it down.

One author of the study suggested this is because time spent looking at screens is time taken away from healthier activities such as sport or sleep.

 Just half an hour per day, or even less, would be the optimum amount for pre-school aged children, according to the researchers.

But experts in the field immediately dismissed the findings as having ‘critical shortcomings’ and doing nothing to prove the screen time had actually caused the bad behaviour.

Scientists at the University of Alberta studied more than 2,400 families and found children glued to screens have more significant behavioural problems.

As well as a higher risk of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), those exceeding two hours per day were five times more likely to be inattentive.

‘We found screen time had a significant impact at five years of age,’ said Dr Piush Mandhane.

Three-year-olds in the study spent an hour-and-a-half, on average, looking at screens every day. This fell slightly to 1.4 hours for five-year-olds.

The researchers found screen time may even have a bigger effect on a child’s behaviour than how much sleep they get or how stressed their parents are.

And this may be because it takes away from other aspects of life which could reduce the risk of attention problems.

Dr Mandhane told MailOnline: ‘Our data suggests that more screen-time leads to less sleep-time.

‘Developing a regular sleep routine, consistent wake and bed times that limit screen-time prior to bed, in also an important part of growth, development, and behaviour.

‘In another analysis, we found that children who watched more than 2 hours of screen time per day were almost 65 per cent less likely to sleep 10 hours per day. So more screen time equals less sleep time.’

The study backs up past research also suggesting damage to sleep, and other studies pointing to poorer brain development, mental health issues and damaged eyes.

A lack of sleep in childhood could stunt the growth of the brain and therefore lead to problems later in life.

Scientists at the CHEO Research Institute in Ottawa found children aged between eight and 11 had five per cent worse brain function than their peers if they spent more than two hours per day looking at a screen.

This, they believe, could be because games and videos don’t stimulate the brain in the same way as, for example, reading a book.

It was also likely to mean they didn’t sleep as well as others.

In the research published today, the scientists found organised sport and sleeping well could actually protect brains from the bad effects of excess screen time.

They found the exercise itself was less important for improving the children’s behaviour than the taking part in arranged activities.

Dr Tamana added: ‘The more time children spent doing organised sports, the less likely they were to exhibit behavioural problems.

‘A lot of the things that you do through organised activities are really important for young kids early on.

‘I think in lieu of screen time, it would be beneficial for parents to increase opportunities for other structured activities instead.’

While the researchers suggested ‘less is more’, they didn’t recommend cutting it out completely.

Instead, they said, it is a good opportunity to make sure children use electronic devices sensibly.

‘Our data suggests that between zero and 30 minutes a day is the optimal amount of screen time,’ said Professor Mandhane.

‘The preschool period is an ideal time for education on healthy relationships with screens.’

Scientists in the UK have criticised the study and said it does not directly link screen time to bad behaviour or ADHD.

And they added the researchers overstepped the mark in issuing advice to parents and doctors based on a flawed paper.

Professor Andrew Przybylski, director of research at Oxford University’s Internet Institute, said: ‘There is no baseline data on children’s behaviour so it is possible that children who are predisposed to behavioural problems are also predisposed to higher levels of screen-time. The paper does not contextualise this properly.

He added: ‘The authors go well beyond their results in providing advice for physicians and educators. The correlations are very small and inconsistent.

‘It is mildly shocking the authors would promote limiting screen-time on the basis of these findings given the evidence in the paper suggests nearly every other factor analysed was a much stronger predictor.’

Dr Bob Patton, a lecturer in clinical psychology at the University of Surrey, said: ‘While [the study] suggests that children under the age of five who spend an average of two hours or more a day in front of screens are more likely to have an ADHD diagnosis, it does not provide any indication that screen time has caused the issues.

‘Whilst overuse of the “electronic babysitter” may or may not contribute towards the development of behavioural problems, parents should be mindful of the possibility, and ensure that young children participate in a variety of activities, both on and off screen.’

The research was published in the journal PLOS ONE.

-Daily Mail

Using our smartphones to constantly take photos is making us lose our memories

Taking photos on our smartphones is causing us to lose our most precious memories, scientists say.

We’re often so distracted by taking pictures that we can’t remember what we saw, forgetting the very thing we wanted to capture.

Using a smartphone takes us away from the moment, shifts our memory and ultimately changes the way we recall what has happened in our own lives, researchers say.

Using smartphones more generally has become a ‘giant source of distraction’ and sharing pictures on social media makes taking them less fun, researchers warn.

In an in-depth feature on the psychology of smartphone photography in Vox, Brian Resnick looks at how attention is key to forming a lasting memory.

When we create memories, neurons in our brains link together the sensations that create memories – for example what something looked like, or what it felt like.

However, if we’re distracted by taking photos, this information will never be stored and these sensations are not registered.

In a study in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, researchers took a few hundred participants on a self-guided tour of a church.

On the tour people were encouraged to take notes of what say saw – such as the shape of the building and what the adornments looked like.

One group had iPods with cameras and took pictures as they went, and the other group did not have cameras on them.

A week later, a quiz revealed those without cameras could correctly answer 7 out of 10 questions about what they saw.

For those who had cameras they got closer to 6 – a small but significant different, researchers say, and a sign the camera was a distraction.

-Dailymail

Drop That Phone! Here Is How Technology Is Miserably Making You And Your Children Fall Apart

Most families don’t see it, but in this 21st-century technology is slowly creating a rift between families.

The idea of being alone for most adults is surfing the internet with their devices, and for those who have families, this hardly goes down well with their spouses and children.

Reconnecting with family after a hectic day of work helps reduce technology addiction. Therapist Jessica Miller of Your Tango, writes this in regards to technology;

“In today’s world, you give so much of yourself to others that, by the time you get home, you just want to crash and numb yourself on the internet. But have you ever wondered what your children see when you choose an electronic device over play time?

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There’s a new advertisement campaign that depicts the brutal truth that most parents don’t want to face. The creators of the ad placed a giant phone between the parent and child to represent the barrier that the child experiences.

My initial reaction when I saw this was, “Oh, this breaks my heart!” As parents, we want our kids and partners to feel like we’re always there for them.

We would never intentionally put a barrier between our families and ourselves. Obviously, this ad holds a lot of truth, and, as parents, we need to pause and look at the relationship that we have with our phones.”

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Do You Have An Addiction To Your Phone?
It’s not the phone (or the content) that we’re addicted to — it’s the distraction. Since we accepted this non-stop pace in our society, we feel awkward when we slow down. We freak out when we have time to chill.

We have no clue how to relax anymore, and when we venture into the unfamiliar state of slowing down, we feel so uncomfortable that we reach for whatever’s closest to help us escape.

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How Can We Stop Being So Susceptible To Distraction Addictions?
1. You can choose to connect, rather than distract.
2. You can put the iPhone down and connect with your kid.
3. You can shut off your phone when you crawl into bed and cuddle up next to your partner.
4. You can look up when you’re running errands and make eye contact with fellow community members.
5. The Berlin wall wasn’t taken down in a day and neither will your habit. It takes 21 days for your brain to wire in a new habit. That means that you must have patience and persistence.

You’ll slide back into old patterns (we all do). When this happens, simply ask your loved ones to remind you of this ad. Then all you need to do is refocus and reconnect with what really matters with your loved ones standing before you.

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Pulse Ng

Forget Pregnancy Kits, Soon You Will Use Smartphones

Researchers at the Hanover Centre for Optical Technologies (HOT),  Germany, have developed contained a ‘self-contained fiber optic sensor’ which will allow you to do all sorts of biomolecular tests – including detecting pregnancies and monitoring diabetes.

That may sound normal but the trick is your will be using your smartphone.

According to them the readings of the sensor can run through an application on a smartphone which provide real-time results.

When properly provisioned, the smartphone-user will have the ability to monitor multiple types of body fluids, including: blood, urine, saliva, sweat or breath.

These developments will help those people who like avoiding hospitals and pharmacies to but pregnancy kits, the services will be available at their disgression.

Avoid Using Your Smartphone At These Spots

In as much as we all love staying connected, and being on social media sites. There are some places you should avoid using phones. We list five of them…

1. Car: Sure, it gets boring spending long commutes or when you’re stuck in crazy traffic and at seemingly endless red lights -listening to music. But that doesn’t mean you should spend all your time texting or on social networking sites, even if you’re in slow-moving traffic. You may end up missing a signal, or being involved in an accident because you haven’t been paying attention to the road. You may also want to avoid taking car selfies for the same reason.

2. Movies: Yes, you shouldn’t take or make calls when you’re watching a movie at a theatre. But that doesn’t mean you should text or tweet throughout the movie either. Remember, those LCD phone screen displays light up quite a bit of theatre and can be an annoyance to your fellow film-goers.
3.Changing Rooms: We all know the hard-to-resist temptation to pick up your smartphone when you’re in a trial room to send a selfie to your bestie in a new outfit to get an opinion on whether you should pick it up. This may be permissible when the store is empty, but not on Day 1 of a sale, or any other time that the store is crowded. If you did, you’d be holding up a queue of potentially irritable s shoppers whose wrath you don’t want to incur.

4. Restuarants/Cafe : It’s cool to check-in to restaurants and upload pictures of t the food you’re served, but its best not to subject the world to bite-for-bite tweets of everything you’re eating. It’s not only annoying for your online followers, but it also means you’re being rude to your dining companion. Check-in if you must, but save the picture-uploading for later. And remember to turn off the flash so that you don’t disturb other diners.

5. Crossing lanes: This one’s a no-brainer, but there are still lots of people out there who text when they’re crossing the road. The most common-sense thing to do is to place your phone in your pocket or your bag, look both ways and then cross the street.

-TOI

Microsoft ditching the Nokia name on smartphones

Microsoft is ditching the Nokia brand name from new devices, less than a year after acquiring the Finnish mobile firm.

New Nokia Lumia smartphones will instead by known as Microsoft Lumia, the company said.

Nokia’s non-mobile division, which is not owned by Microsoft, will continue to use the name.

The mobile operation was bought by Microsoft in April in a deal worth $7.2bn (£4.6bn).

Since then, Microsoft has quietly shifted away from the Nokia brand.

A post on Nokia France’s Facebook page confirmed the branding shift. The renaming will roll out globally in due course, Microsoft has said.

Read more: http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-29724072

Mozilla launching cheap Firefox OS smartphones in India

The Intex Technologies Cloud FX is the first handset to go on sale in India to use the Firefox OS operating system.

The Cloud FX will be the first smartphone offered to the country’s consumers to run a cost-effective alternative to Google’s Android or Apple’s iOS operating systems.

In terms of specifications, the handset, built by Intex Technologies specifically for the Indian market, is not going to give the iPhone a run for its money. It has a 3.5-inch screen, a 1 GHz processor and no front-facing camera.

But that’s not the point; the point is the handset’s operating system which is open and created in a language that pretty much all web designers and developers are familiar with — HTML5. It means that potentially anyone with a technological inclination can create an app for it and that that app can be hosted online as part of a website.

The idea is that as well as regional and global app stores, developers can create hyper-local apps for Firefox OS phones.

READ MORE: http://www.nydailynews.com/life-style/mozilla-33-firefox-phones-arriving-india-article-1.1917638