Since March of 2020, when young students were forced into remote learning, many have become attached to their devices more than ever. The pandemic has not only increased our use of technology, but our children are also becoming more withdrawn and socially isolated.
Although some schools have gradually reopened, many tweens and teens today have been experiencing depression, anxiety, underperforming academically if not completely failing classes -- we've even witnessed a rise in truancy in youth that were once excelling that are now barely passing.
Mental health and the internet
Studies continue to reveal that excessive use of the internet can cause depression in people of all ages. Today we have kids waking up and going to sleep with their technology in the palm of their hands.
Cellphone addiction has been a major contributing factor to a young persons’ decline in mental wellness in all areas of their life, both at home and in school.
If a parent attempts or even threatens to remove their child’s device, it can trigger defiance, rage, and even explosive behavior from the t(w)een. Parents soon learn that their child’s online life is like their oxygen offline.
Therapeutic summer programs
Therapeutic summer programs are designed to give families a good foundation of what they are facing with their child’s behavior towards technology.
This is a time for a digital detox while developing a healthy relationship with technology and building social skills with people in real life.
Some of the benefits can be the following:
Learning coping skills
Anger and stress management
Peer relationships offline
SAT prep classes
Self-esteem building (helps them make better choices)
An overall healthy relationship with their devices
Home plan and contract for technology and devices
The positive side of therapeutic summer programs is that sometimes they are part of the long-term program so your child doesn’t have to switch facilities if you determine they need longer care.
This can also be helpful if your child successfully completes the summer session, however, months later starts to stumble. Therapeutic schools offer open enrollment all year round so they would be able to be there to assist you.
What do therapeutic summer programs typically cost?
Therapeutic summer programs that have quality credential therapists, accredited educational team and enrichment programs will start at about $8000 a month and up. In some cases, PPO insurance may cover a portion of your clinical component of the program.
Since 2001 we have been helping and educating families from all over the country and the options that are available. Each family and child are different with different needs.
Contact us for more information.
About the Author
Sue Scheff is a nationally recognized speaker, parent advocate, and Internet safety expert. She has been featured on TV shows including Good Morning America and Anderson Cooper 360 and has written for USA Today, Wall Street Journal, Forbes, and authored the book: Shame Nation: Choosing Kindness and Compassion in an Age of Cruelty and Trolling.