Impact of Mobile Phones on Teenagers in Trashi Yangtse: Parents’ Perspectives
Tashi Dorji1* and Sonam Jamtsho2
1Principal, Tongmijangsa Primary School, Bhutan
2Principal, Ramjar Middle Secondary School, Bhutan
*Corresponding Author: Tashi Dorji, Principal, Tongmijangsa Primary School, Bhutan.
September 02, 2022; Published: September 30, 2022
Background: In Bhutan, young people have dramatically increased their use of mobile phones.
It has been discovered to have favorable impacts on young entrepreneurs in Phuentsholing and cheese and butter traders in distant Sakteng. However, not all youths in the kingdom are affected in the same way by cell phones. Mobile phones have made life easy and inexpensive for teenagers to contact friends and access information . However, the strong social setting in Bhutanese family lives has been destroyed by the widespread availability of information and the introduction of mobile phones. This study examines how mobile phones affect teens in Trashi Yangtse from the views of parents who have frequent interactions with children.
Objectives: This study was conducted to actually find out the impacts on of mobile phones on teenagers of Trashi Yangtse from the perspectives of parents. It was carried out to
- Understand the teenagers’ mobile phone usage in Trashi Yangtse;
- Comprehend the impact of mobile texting messages on the communication and proper language skills of teenagers and
- Evaluate the physical safety aspects and psychological effects of excessive mobile usage by teenagers.
Methods: Quantitative method was employed to explore the research problem. The data was collected through questionnaires (13 closed questions). The questionnaires were handed out to teenager’s parents in Trashi Yangtse in five different locations. The respondents had teenager’s from13 to 19 years old and they were broadly divided into seven ethnic groups. 44 parents had filled in the questionnaires and handed over to researcher personally while 36 parents emailed the filled in questionnaires.
Results: This study focused on the understanding the impact of mobile phones from parents’ perspective. The findings from this study revealed that the parents’ perception about the use of mobile phones by teenagers in Trashi Yangtse are significantly geared towards having immense negative impacts. The findings are briefly mentioned below:
- Happiness rate of parents:8% of parents mentioned that they were ‘Unhappy’ to find their teenagers using mobile phones.
- Safety of teenagers with mobile phones: The results revealed that cumulatively 73.8% of teenagers’ parents felt ‘Unsafe’ and ‘Very unsafe’ to let teenagers use mobile phones by their teenagers. Of all, 87.6% of teenagers’ parents felt ‘Unsafe’ and ‘Very unsafe’ with teenagers falling under the age category of 15 - 16 years old.
- Loss of proper language skills: The results revealed that the loss of proper language skills was most common in female teenagers. 43.8% of female teenagers’ parents revealed that their teenagers have lost proper language skills very much due to text language. And of all, these female teenagers were under the age category of 17 - 19 years old.
- Interruption of personal time: The findings revealed that the 40% parents of the teenagers said ‘Very true’ and 47.5% parents said ‘True’. Cumulatively 87.5% parents believed that their personal time with their teenagers was interrupted because of the social bonding enabled by mobile phones.
- Non-monitored time usage: The results established that 48 teenagers’ parents out of 80 mentioned that they felt ‘Unsecured’ and ‘Very unsecured’. Cumulatively, 60% of teenagers’ parents felt unsecured and much unsecured of the non-monitored mobile usage by teenagers. Further, categorically, parents whose teenagers were under the age of 17 - 19 years old faced greater insecurity than those of two other two categories.
- Risk of using phone while driving and: The cross tabulation data exposed high risk of accidents due the use of mobile phones. Cumulatively, 100% of teenagers’ parents mentioned ‘Very risky’ and ‘Risky’ to the questions asked. Researchers had found out that mobile phones potentially distract drivers in four different ways such as physically, visually, auditory and cognitively .
- Banning the use of phone while driving: Cumulatively, the 92.5% of parents mentioned ‘Very much’ and ‘Much’ to the question asked. With the breakdown to numbers, there were 70 parents who said ‘Fully agree’ and 4 parents who mentioned ‘Much’.
- Use of mobile phone in the schools: The results revealed that 77.2% of teenagers’ parents from all seven ethnicities were not in favor of allowing mobile phones to be used in schools by teenagers. Ethnocentrically, 22.8% of parents of teenagers under sharchop ethnicity said that mobile phones should not be allowed in the school, followed by 19% of parents of teenagers from Lhotsamp ethnicity.
- Purpose of mobile phones for teenagers: The results revealed that teenagers only use mobile phones for social media rather than academic purpose. Of the three categories of age, 28.6% of male teenagers under the age groups of 13 - 14 and 17 - 19 years old used mobile phones for social media. Only 14.3% of male teenagers under the age group of 15 - 16 years old used mobile phones for social media. In the female teenagers’ category, 34.6% of teenagers under the age group of 17 - 19 years old used mobile phones for social media, followed by 15.4% for the age groups of 13 - 4 and 15 - 16 years old. Cumulatively, 71.4% of male teenagers used mobile phones for social media and 65.5% of female teenagers used mobile phones for social media.
Keywords: Social Media; Teenagers; Mobile Phones
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