Choose people over devices. Set a family value that human interaction trumps technology. Shelve your own smart phone or laptop during family time, and encourage kids to use their devices when alone, not during the time they share with others.

Structure an e-day. Work toward a finite beginning and end to your child’s online connectedness each day. Choose when and where kids can use technology – and when and where they need to unplug.

Set limits. Most devices come with parental controls that include passwords and timers to prevent overuse – take the time to look into them.

Find different ways to play. In the absence of other attractive options, bored kids will default to using their devices. Find alternative fun things to do – don’t just cut out the digital stuff without offering another idea.

Trust your instincts. If you think your child might be spending too much time on social networks, playing online games, or endlessly texting, then they probably are.

Source: Daniel Sieberg, author of The Digital Diet: The 4-Step Plan to Break Your Digital Addiction and Regain Balance in Your Life.

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