Data, research and simple evidence: everything tells us that children and young people of today are becoming increasingly overweight. We all know that obesity is often the result of bad eating habits and lack of physical activity. But are you aware that our children are also at risk of ‘information overload’ nicknamed ‘infobesity’.
The amount of information that we are exposing our brains to on a daily basis is increasing rapidly. Just think about the amount of news, views, opinions and personal messages you read daily. Since 2013 the amount of e-mails sent worldwide has increased from 31billion to 182.9billion and Facebook now has 3.3 million posts per minute!
We need to realise that there could eventually be consequences of this “binge” of data. In a recent article published in the New York Times, entitled “Battling Data Overload in the Age of Infobesity ” it has been discussed that the damage that could be caused is the inability to select and interpret information with which we come into contact with, this in turn could lead us to make bad decisions.
This is a significant and real problem, especially when we think about children and young people of school age, their brains are still developing and need more than ever to be able to interpret the information they receive in a meaningful way.
So, how do we combat this issue when it comes to raising our children in this digital age? As parents it’s our job to make sure our children use other ways to find information and process it without using the internet, for example researching topics at the library, something so many of us grew up doing. It is also essential that we limit screen/internet time so that children are able to find other alternative ways of spending their time and educating themselves. This digital age is new to us all, and as long as we are aware of the potential dangers of information overload, we can take steps to ensure that we stay connected to the real world. 🙂