Kozhikode: Gone are the days when children played cricket or football during summer holidays. Now mobile phones, laptops and other electronic gadgets have replaced the games, resulting in sleep deprivation and other behavioural disorders among them. Psychiatrist Dr. P.N. Suresh Kumar of KMCT Medical College told DC that sleep deprivation among children was rising. “They suffer from various disorders due to the excess use of electronic gadgets,” he said and added, “they will have behavioural, cognitive, sexual and physical issues if they have close contact with their mobiles.” Mr Kumar also revealed that a study has found that electromagnetic radiations can affect the children as their skull is thinner. Irritability and academic deterioration are some other effects.
“Excessive phone usage can cause physical problems like shortsight, headache, body posture problems and backache. There is also a condition called carpal tunnel syndrome, numbness, tingling and weakness in the hand because of pressure on the median nerve,” he added. “Whenever children of the same age group come together, they talk about games and other technical aspects,” says N. Laji, mother of a 17-year-old. Another mother opined that it was better to keep children indoors due to the severe heat. Nomophobia, which is the fear of being without a mobile device or being beyond mobile phone contact, is also affecting the young generation. Experts say that the curriculum should include lessons on the wise use of electronic gadgets.