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So much advice and strategy out there is aimed at limiting the time kids spend on screens: TV, video games, cell phones. When it comes to the latter, though, parents could use some time away, too.
Maybe even more than their kids!
Some new studies show just why. More than half the kids surveyed in a recent study said that their parents check their phones too often. Nearly one-third said that they feel "unimportant" when their parents are distracted by their phones.
Jenna Bush interviewed Boston Medical Center developmental pediatrician Dr. Jenny S. Radesky who led a study of parent-child interactions at fast-food restaurants. Radesky reported 70 percent of adults observed used their phones during the meals. She also found that parents responded "mechanically" when kids tried to get their parents' attention during the meal.
Young kids reported feeling angry, sad, mad and lonely in relation to their parents' constant connectivity, the Today Show reported.
But phones are fun! Even something of a relief or a lifeline to parents who need some downtime. Not to mention, some parents have the pressure of 24-7 connectivity for work to contend with in the seemingly impossible quest for work-life balance.
Experts for the Today Show offer these strategies to parents for figuring out how to not get distracted and put down the phone:
Figure out which triggers are most distracting for you.
Watch your children's cues constantly, and always acknowledge their basic needs.
Schedule specific tech-free family time.
Think twice before using a mobile device while you're with your children.
Check email before the kids gets up, while they're at school or after they go to bed.