Screen Free Week: How much time are you spending on your phone?

Monday marked the beginning of Screen Free Week, an event organised by children’s charity Fairplay.

It aims to encourage fun, connection, and discovery within communities by offering resources that help you put your phone down.

Many have accepted the challenge by pledging to limit screen usage in different ways, including unplugging for a day, shutting off phones at dinner time, or taking the whole week to only use screens for work and school.

During lockdown, Ofcom reported that adults spent a massive 40% of their day in front of a screen.

This equates to six hours and 25 minutes a day, or 45 hours a week.

Average screen time OFCOM 2020
Lockdown may have ended, but the same habits have continued to thrive. Streaming services saw a significant rise in subscriptions during this period but numbers are still continuing to grow. This trend was even more pronounced among 16-34s, who streamed for an average two hours each day.

Screen time by age group OFCOM 2022
Infogram

According to Valleywise Health, too much screen time can lead to obesity, sleep problems, chronic neck and back problems, depression, anxiety and lower test scores in children. The percentage of UK adults who experienced a significant mental health problem is estimated to have risen by approximately 50% during the pandemic – the symptoms mirrored that of excessive screen time. According to socail.com, limiting social media screen time to 30 minutes per day will improve well-being and reduce depression.

How you can limit your time:
It may be impossible to completely switch off but there are some tactics you can use to improve your relationship with screens.
1. Tell your phone to remind you when you have reached a healthy limit-
Choose Apps & notifications from Settings, tap an app name, then choose Advanced and Time spent in app. Touch the App Timer button to set your limit for the day.
Apps like Instagram and TikTok are now encouraging a time limit:
2. Establish technology-free zones
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3. Force yourself to limit use of the apps you use regularly

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4. Disable notifications

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Tell us about your screen time:

SuperSurvey

feature Photo by Rubenz Arizta on Unsplash