TIMESOFINDIA.COM | Last updated on – Apr 26, 2023 3:41 PM IST
The unfortunate incident happened in Thrissur district of Kerala. An 8-year-old girl died from a cellphone explosion while watching cartoons, according to reports citing police.
Police say overheating of the battery could be a reason for the explosion. The child, whose right palm and face were injured, died on the spot.
While the news has broken our hearts, it also draws attention to a critical issue, which is how we can ensure our children are safe when using cell phones.
95% of teens own a smartphone: research study
Mobile phones have become a necessity and have become an important part of a child’s life after the pandemic.
From learning to playing, the world around children seems to have been captured in a mobile phone.
A Pew Research Center survey of American children found that 95% of teens own a smartphone. The scenario among Indian children may not be much different, especially after the pandemic when schools and colleges had to be closed and online classes started to continue the teaching-learning process.
With cell phones unavoidable, here are a few safety tips parents should know.
Set cell phone schedule
To ensure that your child uses a cell phone without having to compromise on other activities, you need to create a cell phone plan and always check whether it is properly followed or not.
A proper schedule will keep your child from enjoying themselves. It will also greatly reduce screen timing.
Make the dos and don’ts clear
There are several don’ts and few obvious things to do when giving cell phones to children.
Prevent your child from using mobile phones while they are charged. Children and several adults use mobile phones even when they are charged. This can affect normal charging and the phone may take longer to charge and may overheat. Excessive heat in phones while charging can cause explosions, as seen in the recent accident.
Encourage your child to share their experiences with you
Don’t snoop through cell phone search history and instead have a healthy discussion with your child about the internet experience.
That way, they are more likely to open up to you about the problems they face over the internet. Cyberbullying is another serious issue nowadays that parents need to be careful about.
Keep them away from inappropriate content
Use the parental controls in the phone to prevent the child from being exposed to content intended for adults and those over 18 years old.
The internet is a huge place with a lot of content – both good and bad. It is important for parents to keep track of what type of content their children are consuming.
Don’t be hard on them
There is no doubt that children react when something important to them is restricted. So if you notice your kid getting more involved with cell phones, help them understand the downsides. Don’t yell or swear at them.
Try to distract her from phones and keep her busy with other fun activities. To make it more enjoyable, take part in the activity yourself.
When is the right age to give your child a phone?
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