So today I want to share about a very important issue. Is Technology good for Chloe or any child with Autism? Well I can’t answer for every child, because every child is different. Article after article says “Screens can cause Autism”. Hmm if that were true Autism in children would be even higher that it already is. It may not be good for them, but I haven’t read of any proof that it is the cause. I have read that screens and technology affect childrens brains in a devastating way. It can interfere with cognitive and social development. I have watched YouTube videos that state that watching TV makes a childs attention span worse. So what do we believe ? Again all I can say is how it affects my daughter.
Chloe saw TV before 2 years of age. Before she was diagnosed with Autism at 3 I already knew there was a problem. She cried a lot!! She stopped napping at 15 months, so the days were so long. One day when she had been crying for quite awhile I turned on the TV hoping to find something to calm us both. Enter Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. She stopped crying and even smiled. She fell in love with those characters and has all of them in her room. I thought well she can learn from the show and it makes her happy. Addiction happened immediately. She would scream when it went off and bang her head on the floor. Then I had heard about Baby Enstein. These had classical music, which Chloe loved. She loved these videos and they did help with speech sounds, but again she wanted them on all the time!!
Fast forward through many years of fits and now she discovers the computer. By now she had her Autism diagnosis. We were told how computer games and songs could help her, but she didn’t want it in small doses. So here came the fits again. We let her cry it out and boy did she. She also discovered she could watch songs on our phones and could work our phones better than us. LOL. I will be honest, sometimes I needed a break or even a chance just to wake up and would let her use my phone. The problem is she wouldn’t get off the phone when she was asked, even with a timer set. She would also borrow my Kindle tablet for playing games.
Chloe will start displaying terrible behaviors after using electronics. She talks less and screams more. She has a terrible attention span and refuses to do other learning activities. She scripts more and gets so overstimulated she paces the house. I try to calm her down with little success. So we have decided to not let her use the phone, tablet or computer for awhile, maybe for good. I would rather her learn more naturally. She asked this morning and actually handled hearing no pretty well. Thank goodness.
What about TV? She only watches movies on the weekend and they don’t seem to affect her behavior right now. She only watches 2 and they are spread out. During the week the only thing she sees on TV is if we watch a video about animals or sometimes she asks for music, but this is not an every day situation. So my daughter does exhibit the concerning behavior that I have read about and so I choose to lower and hopefully cut out her technology use. If we move again to a forever home I have decided not to have a TV in the main living room of the house. Hopefully that will help her not ask for it so much. We all have to look at our own children and decide what is best for them. Less technology is what is best for Chloe. If your child needs technology to communicate that is totally different. If they can use it without lasting issues or behavior problems by all means let them use it. It’s a child by child decision. I hope this post was useful to you.
Have a wonderful and blessed day