Limiting screen time isn’t just for children

Published 7:00 am Friday, December 9, 2016

How much screen time adults and children get on a daily basis is becoming a beast of a discussion as technology becomes more involved in everything we do.

NPR reported that people with children spend an average of nine hours and 22 minutes a day in front of a screen for personal and work reasons.

That statistic shocked me, though it almost seems reasonable in an era where screens are everywhere.

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Typing this column involved me looking at not one, but two screens, while a third screen on my phone buzzed on the desk.

Though one column doesn’t constitute nine hours of screen time, other activities throughout the day quickly add up.

When I go home, I’ll turn on the news for a while, and then watch a favorite show or perhaps a movie. Meanwhile, I’ll also look up a recipe for dinner on my phone or check social media sites and read online news articles. Even reading a book, in reality, can mean using another electronic device. 

All of these activities can account for well over nine hours of screen time depending on your individual habits.

Using screens is unavoidable, but it’s important to take breaks and allow your eyes time to heal and focus on areas with less harmful lights.

That could mean listening to the news on the radio instead of on the television screen, or reading the physical copy of your favorite book or magazine.

Some devices have options to dim your screen or tint it a certain color to make the light less harsh on your eyes.

The simplest solution should be the easiest, yet it is often the most ingrained; let’s put down our phones at dinner and when we’re with friends. Spending less time with the Internet and more with each other is better for our eyes, and our relationships.

About Julia Arenstam

Staff Writer

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