YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WYTV) — True crime television and podcasts are becoming increasingly popular, you might notice your teenage kid watching or listening to more of the genre. But watching too much true crime comes with its drawbacks.
Watching true crime can be a lot of fun, but psychologist Dr. Chivonna Childs, with the Cleveland clinic, says watching too many of these grisly shows can change your view of the world. That goes for your teen, too.
“It can increase our anxiety because we become hypervigilant. We’re always looking for the bad person – every white van becomes the van of a killer or a murderer,” Childs said.
Though it’s healthy for a kid or a teenager to be wary of strangers, if you notice your kid is becoming overly anxious, triple-checking locks, or is unable to sleep, it might be time to press pause.
“Notice when you’ve had too much. If you’re more than hypervigilant, if your anxiety is increased, if you’re fearful of leaving your home, if you start to isolate and you’re thinking more about the true crime than you think about anything else – it’s time to take a break,” Childs said.
The anxiety can lead to isolation and poor mental health.
Childs stresses moderation as key when it comes to watching true crime, and it’s important to set limits for you and your child.
For when it becomes too much — turn to lighter content, or different hobbies, as a distraction.