It's no secret that most of us spend too much time on our phones. Our phones are powerful tools that help us stay connected, informed and (sometimes) productive. Scientific studies are showing that the amount of time we're spending in front of our screens is having a negative impact on our focus and attention. Hopefully we're paying enough attention to the amount of time our children are spending in front of a screen.
A large Canadian study which tracked almost 2,500 two-year-olds concluded that spending lots of time using screens can delay their development of skills such as language and sociability. What's more, experts in Canada and the US say that children should not use screens before they're at least eighteen-months-old.
Surprisingly, however, new guidance from the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH) stopped short of recommending specific limits on screen time, saying there's little evidence that it's harmful. Although no solid proof of harm has been presented by these studies, it's worth closely monitoring screen usage.
The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH) recommends asking yourself the following questions:
- Is screen time in your household controlled?
- Does screen use interfere with what your family want to do?
- Does screen use interfere with sleep?
- Are you able to control snacking during screen time?
The report continues...
"If a family can ask themselves (or be asked by others) these questions, and are satisfied with the answers, then they can be reassured that they are likely to be doing as well as they can with this tricky issue.
If a family wants to reduce screen use, we have offered some practical tips to support them to do so."
It's undeniable that spending too much time looking at a screen isn't good for our mental and physical health. It should be our aim to use technology wisely and spend more time outdoors.