After their very own gaming stations and music systems, techno-savvy kids have gone a step beyond to demand their very own cell phone! Cell phones are no more a commodity restricted for adult usage, however a cell phone is a commodity that needs to be handled with great care and responsibility. Like every other technology, cell phones have some pros and cons associated with them. An advantage and perhaps the only valid argument for having cell phones for kids is providing safety for kids since a cell phone can be used to determine the whereabouts of kids and the kids can also call the parents in case of emergency when they need help.
Nowadays with the increasing number of threats at schools, it is obvious for parents to be worried about their child's safety and a mobile phone can be one of the convenient ways for parents to rest assured about their children's safety. Another point that can be possibly considered as an advantage is the fact that handling a cell phone might give the child a sense of responsibility and make him comfortable with the society. However parents should make sure whether or not their children are ready to handle the kind of responsibility. In case you are planning to get a cell phone for your teen, there is an advantage that your teen will not be constantly blocking the home phone.
As for the cons of cell phones, there are many. First and foremost, the parents have to be really sure whether their child is capable of handling the responsibility of carrying a mobile phone. Having a cell phone might lead the child to all the probable ways in which the cell phone can be misused. It is one thing to make the children comfortable with technology but giving them their very own mobile phone at an early age might turn them into mobile junkies who are addicted to their mobile phones with constant short messaging, cell phone games and other add-ons. Also think of it from the health point of view. In a world where we hear reports about excessive use of mobile phones being harmful for the health, how could we possibly allow the children to be exposed to these threats?
The cell phone market has come up with some of the most attractive models for the kids segment. However even if the cell phones are provided with the safety interests in mind, the kids will soon start demanding the higher range and fancy cell phones that would be next in line. Providing expensive mobile phone to kids would actually attract muggers and threaten your child's security instead of safeguarding it. Giving cell phones to kids is actually providing them with an addictive luxury under the guile of a necessity.
Now that we have weighed the pros and cons of having cell phones for children, finally it comes down to the parents who have to judge the capabilities and needs of their children and make the decision accordingly. In case you are dabbling with the thought of getting your child a cell phone think of all these suggestions in mind. First of all do not get a phone for your child if the child is demanding the cell phone for fitting in the school crowd. Do not encourage materialistic thinking in your children and explain properly to your child why she/he cannot have the cell phone at a young age. Opt for a pay-as-you-go plan, which will help you keep a track of the usage of the cell phone. Do not fall prey to marketing tactics and hype and allow your children to talk you into getting expensive and fancy phones and upgrading the model with every new arrival. Explain your children the safety concerns that are the sole reason for provision of the mobile phone and discourage excessive time spent on cell phone gaming and short text messaging. Parents always expect their children to grow up to be responsible adults, but they should realize that it is their own decisions in matters like these that are instrumental in shaping the future of their children.