Parenting in the Age of Smartphones

, Written by Christine Pitawanich, Posted: Tue, October 9 2012 at 6:36 PM, Updated: Wed, October 10 2012 at 10:33 AM

Leah Diggle is mom to 2-year old Colton and has a little girl on the way. While she takes measures to limit her own smartphone use...

"Most of the time I leave my phone in my car...it's easy to be concentrating on the phone instead of him," said Diggle.

She says she's seen other parents get carried away. Checking the weather, e-mails or social networking sites like Facebook easy to check.

"There are a lot of parents that do get so wrapped up in smartphones that things could happen."

According to the Centers for Disease Control, child injuries since the 1970s have gone down...that's until the number rose 12% between 2007 and 2010.

Add to that, the number of Americans owning smartphones shot up from nine-million in 2007 to about 114-million in 2012.

The data is making some experts wonder if there's a correlation.

"It's very plausible...parents get easily distracted by their computer and handheld devices," said Dr. Alan Frierson, a pediatrician in Medford.

Mother Amanda Wynne says she decided not to get a smartphone.

"When it's all right there at your fingertips, it's an obsession, a lot of people are so addicted to it they can't just turn it off and put it away," said Wynne.

However, for Leah Diggle, ignoring her smartphone and spending time with her son is easy, and something she says she does on a regular basis.

The increase in child injuries could be an anomaly but experts agree, any time you take your eyes off your child something can go wrong and cell phones are just a part of that disaster recipe.

About the Author

Christine Pitawanich

Christine Pitawanich was born and raised in the Pacific Northwest. In 2010, she received a master's degree in Broadcast Journalism from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University in New York.

Christine also has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications from the University of Washington.

Before joining the NBC5 News team, she had the opportunity to file reports from Washington D.C. for WFFT FOX Ft. Wayne News in Indiana. Christine has also interned at KOMO-TV in Seattle.

Christine loves to ski, try new food and have fun in the outdoors.

Catch Christine anchoring weekdays on NBC 5 News at 5pm.

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