At What Age Should You Give Your Child Their First Cell Phone?

Cell Phone

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With cell phones fast-becoming the standard in contemporary society, the challenge of exactly what age children will need to have their own personal cell phone hasn’t ever been more fiercely discussed. Indeed, it has grown to be very common to see small toddlers, scarcely capable of talk, fool around with their parents’ phones effortlessly. The ease in which children can figure out how to find their way round this technology places many adults to being embarrassed, however that same accessibility can also be why parents really should be very wary about giving their youngster a cell phone ahead of time. Understanding that, exactly what do parents really need to take into account before handing their youngster a cell phone

Do They Need One?

When considering whether it is appropriate for your child to have a cell phone, the first question you should always ask is whether they need a cell phone. Some children are more independent than others, and with parents working long hours, it can be prudent for your child to be able to contact you at a moment’s notice. If your child needs access to a cell phone for safety reasons, then you should not hesitate to put something in place.

Are They Responsible?

It can be very difficult to be objective about your own children, but when it comes to owning a cell phone, parents have to try. Some children are far more responsible than others from a young age and can be trusted with a cell phone. A cell phone presents risks and dangers to children including accessing inappropriate content online or talking to people that they shouldn’t be. At a basic level, cell phones are just huge distractions – something that is not limited to children. Your child must be responsible enough to use their cell phone only when required.

If your child could do with a cell phone so that you can stay in contact with them, and they have demonstrated that they can be responsible with one, then it may be appropriate to introduce a basic cell phone at a reasonably young age (10 – 11). However, for most children, this is simply not necessary. Most 10-year-old children have no need for a cell phone, and just because their friends might have a cell phone does not mean that you should cave and buy one for them. The teenage years are generally accepted as an appropriate age to introduce cell phones, but even then, caution should be taken. If your child shows any kind of irresponsibility or is spending too much time on their cell, do not be afraid to take it away. Ultimately, different circumstances will dictate at what age your child needs a cell phone, but always ask yourself the questions; do they need one, and are they responsible?