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By Kristin Krarup-Joyce

Screen time includes watching videos, movies, and TV. It also includes playing games on any electronic device – TV, cell phone, iPad, gaming systems, computer, etc.

Screen time for children under age 3 has been linked to irregular sleep patterns and delayed language acquisition. Sleep disturbances in older children have also been linked to screen time. Screen time can be habit-forming, so the more children participate in screen-based activities early on, the more difficult it becomes for them to turn off the screens later.

Did you know that your own screen time impacts your children too? When the TV is on, or you are on your own phone, iPad, or computer within your child’s field of vision, you are exposing her to screen time. Be mindful of this, and try to limit your own screen time when you are with your child.

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, TV and other media should be avoided for infants and children under the age of 2. After age 2, screen time should be limited to high-quality content for no more than an hour a day.

For more information regarding the topic of children and media, google the work of Dimitri Christakis.

“A child’s brain develops rapidly during these first years and young children learn best by interacting with people, NOT screens.”

Adapted from the University of Michigan Speech Language Pathology STEPS Program

What do you think? Join me on Twitter–Psyched Out @NCESupport

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One Response to “Psyched Out: Thoughts on screen time”

  1. Mary Tomac says:

    I totally agree with this article. It is very harmful for young children’s brains and I believe there is also research that states it shortens their attention span. I also believe social skills are impacted. Good timing for this article when people are looking at what to buy kids for Christmas.

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