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Media and Child Health - Why Media Matters

by Guest
Posted March 13 2012 04:53pm

Children today are consuming media at unprecedented rates. The average preschooler watches 32 hours of television a week. Almost half of households with preschool children have 3 TVs in the home and 18% have 5 or more! 32% of 2-7 year olds have a TV in their bedroom. So what do all these numbers mean? They mean that presently, the average child spends more time with screen media than on any other activity save for sleeping. It also means that there is good reason for parents to be concerned about what their kids are watching.

How Screen Media affects Children

Children are drawn to screen media. And with all the educational claims that products are making, it is no wonder that smartphones, tablets, and TVs are being used as babysitters. They are reliable and easily accessible options for parents who, understandably, need a little downtime. So what can parents to do in an increasingly media-saturated environment?

What the experts say

The Canadian Pediatric Society (CPS) and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) have both issued similar guidelines for parents that recommend no screen time for children under two year of age and no more than 1-2 hours per day for children 2 and up.

Setting limits

Heavy media use is associated with higher rates of obesity, anxiety, reduced attention spans, and sleep disturbances. Fortunately, these effects are significantly mediated when parents set limits. Studies show that those children whose parents have put limits on screen time and what content is appropriate show reductions in these effects.

Get Involved!

Apps, digital games, and even TV shows can be educational when they are used appropriately. The challenge is finding the content that is right for you and your family (or perhaps finding the time to find that content). There are countless educational videos for kids online, but one of the most important steps a parent can take is to be involved. Whether that is through co-viewing or talking to your child about what they’re watching, parental involvement is vital. After all, you are the expert on your child.

 


Kidobi.com logo and tag

Kidobi provides smart media solutions for parents with young children. Our unique technology adapts to the skill level of each child, creating tailor-made, ad-free playlists that are just right for them. Give your child media that matters! Visit www.kidobi.com today to make screen time count!

 

 

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