According to psychological research, there are seven things that responsible parents should never purchase for their children.
Bringing up children in today’s consumer-driven world may be a challenging endeavor, particularly when it comes to making informed decisions about the things that we purchase for them. As parents, we are always looking for ways to provide the greatest possible experience for our children; yet, not every purchase is good. As a matter of fact, psychological research reveals that there are some things that ought to be avoided. The following are seven examples of such items, each of which is followed by an explanation consisting of two paragraphs: the first paragraph presents an argument, and the second paragraph provides supporting citations from books, studies, and other authoritative sources.
Video Games That Are Extremely Violent:
The issue of violent video games has been a source of concern for a considerable amount of time among both psychologists and parents. In the minds of young people, the greatest cause for concern is the possibility for desensitization to violent acts and the promotion of aggressive behavior. It is possible for youngsters to have their vision of reality altered when they are exposed to excessive violence in video games. This might potentially lead to a greater acceptance of violence as a normal part of life after they have been exposed to it. Furthermore, these games frequently lack the emotional context of real-world repercussions, which might hinder a child’s capacity to develop empathy and comprehend the seriousness of violent actions. This can be a problem for children who are playing these games.
Each of these concerns is supported by a multitude of studies. For instance, Anderson and Bushman’s exhaustive meta-analysis, which was published in the journal “American Psychologist,” discovered a persistent association between exposure to violent video games and increases in aggressive behavior, thoughts, and mood. In addition, the book “Violent Video Game Effects on Children and Adolescents” written by Craig A. Anderson, Douglas A. Gentile, and Katherine E. Buckley offers a comprehensive summary of the studies conducted in this field, reiterating the detrimental effect that video games have on the growth and development of children.
Highly complex Smart gadgets:
Despite the fact that technology is an indispensable component of contemporary life, it is possible that giving a child access to smart gadgets that are highly complex could be more detrimental than advantageous. Exposure to screens at a young age and in excessive amounts can be detrimental to the social and cognitive development of a child. Smart gadgets that are more advanced typically provide unrestricted access to the internet and social media platforms. This can put children in danger of being exposed to unsuitable content and interrupt their capacity to engage in play and interactions in the real world, both of which are crucial for their development.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has produced guidelines that suggest limits on the amount of time that children spend in front of screens. These suggestions emphasize the significance of face-to-face interaction and physical play. Furthermore, in her book titled “The Big Disconnect: Protecting Childhood and Family Relationships in the Digital Age,” author Catherine Steiner-Adair investigates the ways in which excessive use of technology can have a detrimental effect on the emotional and social development of children.
The argument is that dolls that depict unrealistic body images might contribute to children’s dissatisfaction with their bodies and harmful views about beauty, particularly in young females. The appearance of these dolls frequently reflects an unreachable beauty ideal, which might result in a skewed sense of what constitutes normal and appropriate behavior. This can become a contributing factor in the development of self-esteem problems and unfavourable perceptions of one’s body later in life.
A study that was published in the journal “Developmental Psychology” and conducted by Dittmar, Halliwell, and Ive demonstrated that young girls’ body image was negatively influenced when they were exposed to dolls that had unrealistic proportions. In addition, Julia V. Taylor’s book “The Body Image Workbook for Teens” offers some insights into the ways in which early exposure to these beauty standards might have an effect on the way adolescents perceive their own bodies.
Toys that generate an excessive amount of noise are not only a nuisance, but they also have the potential to do damage to a child’s hearing. Hearing impairment can be caused by prolonged exposure to loud noises, and the risk of hearing damage is considerably higher in young children since their ears are more sensitive than most adults’ ears. Additionally, these toys have the potential to be overstimulating, which may result in difficulties with concentration and attention span.
Concerns have been expressed by the World Health Organization (WHO) over the possibility of children experiencing hearing loss as a result of noise, with a portion of the risk being attributed to noisy toys. A study that was conducted and published in the “Journal of the Acoustical Society of America” tested the sound levels of popular toys and discovered that several of them exceeded the levels that are considered to be safe for children’s ears.
Extremely Gendered Toys
that heavily reinforce gender norms might restrict a child’s inventiveness and potential. In the case of girls, for instance, toys that are excessively feminized can convey the message that their value is dependent on their looks or the responsibilities they play in the home, whereas toys that are excessively masculine for males can promote aggressiveness and stoicism. In order to enhance creativity, emotional expression, and cognitive development in children, it is beneficial to encourage them to play with a diverse assortment of toys.
A research that was published in the journal “Sex Roles: A Journal of Research” revealed the ways in which gender-typed toys contribute to the reinforcement of traditional gender roles. The author Lise Eliot’s book “Pink Brain, Blue Brain” offers a comprehensive analysis of the ways in which these formative experiences contribute to the formation of gender differences in behavior and interests.
Fast Food Play Sets
There is a possibility that youngsters will develop bad eating habits if they play with play sets that are designed to seem like fast food restaurants or junk food. The culture of fast food is frequently glamorized by these toys, which makes it appear exciting and appealing to the minds of young people. considering the increased incidence of childhood obesity, this can lead to a predilection for unhealthy food choices at an early age, which is particularly alarming considering the current state of affairs.
Research has shown that children who are exposed to this form of marketing are more likely to prefer and eat foods that are high in calories but low in nutrients. This is supported by the fact that the influence of marketing unhealthy foods to children has been widely established. Another topic that is covered in Eric Schlosser’s book “Fast Food Nation” is the impact that the culture of fast food stores has on the eating habits of youngsters.
Excessive Reward-Based Toys
Toys that are designed to be given as prizes for good behavior or achievements might create a problematic dynamic in which children expect material incentives for satisfying basic expectations. This is the seventh argument in the argument that excessive reward-based toys are harmful. When this occurs, it can be detrimental to the development of intrinsic drive as well as the capacity to appreciate non-material incentives such as self-satisfaction, praise, and the intrinsic delight that comes from learning and accomplishing something.
Research in the field of developmental psychology, including studies conducted by Alfie Kohn, author of “Punished by Rewards,” has demonstrated that an excessive dependence on material rewards can reduce a child’s natural tendency to learn and explore. The argument put up by Kohn is that this can result in a decrease in long-term motivation and an increased emphasis on short-term gains.
In conclusion, although it is natural for us to want to provide our children with whatever they desire, it is essential that we make conscious decisions regarding the toys and other goods that we bring into their lives. Parents are able to make educated judgments that promote healthy development and well-being. These decisions can be made by taking into consideration the psychological influence of these goods.