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It isn’t uncommon to see a child under the age of 10 carrying around the latest smartphone and refusing to let it go at all costs. And while it seems innocent enough to hand your child a phone, it could be dangerous, so dangerous, in fact, that one expert says that it’s the equivalent of giving them a gram of coke.

“I always say to people, when you’re giving your kid a tablet or a phone, you’re giving them a bottle of wine or a gram of coke,” she said.

“Are you going to leave them to knock the whole thing out on their own behind closed doors?

“Why do we pay so much less attention to those things than we do to dr*gs and alc0hol when they work on the same brain impulses?”

Mandy Saligari, a Harley Street rehab clinic specialist, who speaks alongside experts in technology addiction experts and experts on adolescent development believes that when we give our children free access to apps like Facebook, Snapchat and Instagram, we are giving them addictive substances. And while we may not realize it, their addiction should be treated similarly to that of someone who is addicted to a hard substance.

With that in mind, Saligari isn’t alone, and one study in particular completely backs her claims. The study was carried out by the University of Maryland and says that smartphone addiction is quite similar to coke addiction. As a stimulant, coke produces dopamine, which gives us a sense of excitement.

To thwart addiction, it may be best to cut back on your child’s screen time. Give them limits, and take the device away when necessary. While they may fight, as addicts would upon you taking their stash in the long run. If you believe your child needs further help with their addiction, check out this helpful link.

Image via Yahoo