Can Children Watch TV

Can children watch tv

Can a baby watch TV? Perhaps, every parent sooner or later asks this question. Starting in the 1990s, pediatricians unanimously reiterate his harm. The caveats are not only advisory in nature, based on personal experience and common sense, but also backed up by numerous studies.

From this article you will learn

Features of vision in infants

  • Weak eye muscles. This is a feature of all newborns. That is why the baby cannot focus his eyes, his eyes either run up, or even mow. This is a physiological phenomenon that goes away on its own.
  • Infant Vision adapts to the outside world gradually, and the first year it is not so sharp. Monthly children at a distance of up to 40 centimeters see only blurry silhouettes, still cannot distinguish colors, beyond 60 centimeters they do not recognize objects at all.
  • Quick change of pictures on the TV screen straining not only weak eyesight, but also the immature nervous system of the baby. Especially dangerous is flickering at night, when the contrast between light and darkness is most noticeable.
  • Vision formation occurs up to three years. Until this time, children can observe physiological farsightedness.

Opinion of Dr. Komarovsky

Evgeny Olegovich is convinced that television is the achievement of civilization that spoils the health of a child.

On his forum there are many stories confirming this fact. Mommies vied with each other to share stories about how their three-month-old son’s eyes watered after watching a short, or about how detrimental the effect of watching TV on sleep, the kids begin to get nervous, cry out in a dream.

From what age can I watch

The World Health Organization provides data on how old a child can watch TV and how long you can stay at the screen.

  • Newborns and children under 3 years old to watch TV is strictly prohibited.
  • Preschoolers are allowed to spend at the screen no more than 30 minutes a day.
  • No more than 1 hour Allowed to watch TV for younger students from 6 to 10 years.
  • Allowed time for senior school age is from 1 to 3 hours.

Possible consequences

Television has appeared in our life relatively recently. Over time, not only the transmission format, image quality, but also the TV itself changes. From simple lamp tubes we have come to the era of liquid crystal screens. In this regard, parents have questions, is a blue screen really dangerous? Let’s figure it out in order.

    Vision. For a long time, ophthalmologists have said that if a child watches TV a lot, it impairs vision, and contributes to the development of myopia. It is especially dangerous for children under 3 years old. But in 2000, Lee Duffner, a doctor at the American Academy of Ophthalmology, after a series of studies, proved that watching TV shows does not cause physical damage to the eyes, but their overstrain and fatigue.

If your child watches TV sideways, sits close enough to the screen, starts blinking or squinting often, this is because vision problems already exist. To delay a visit to the doctor for a consultation is not worth it.

  • Speech. In 2008, Dmitry Khristaksis, a professor at the Seattle Institute and the University of Washington, after years of research, proved that children who regularly watch television programs in infancy are six times more likely to suffer from speech impairment. This is not connected at all with what sense they carry, since the baby is not yet able to perceive and analyze information, but with the fact that the connection between the mother and the child is lost. The time that could be devoted to the game and the conversation, developing the vocabulary of the baby, is spent watching a sequence that has no meaning. Accordingly, the perception of oral speech is impaired.
  • Nervous system. The immature nervous system of the infant, in contact with the television, can respond differently. Overexcitation, especially at a low temperature or slight malaise, causes vagaries, tantrums, uncontrollable fears. All this causes problems with sleep. And sleep is undoubtedly important for children, it affects the harmonious physical and psychological development. Some neurologists note the relationship of cramps in children and screen flicker. Dr. Christaksis notes that watching TV has a cumulative and delayed effect, which can manifest itself in school age hyperactivity disorder and attention deficit.
  • Good Myths

    The new generation of parents is distinguished by the fact that, firstly, they themselves fell into the era of all-consuming television, and secondly, they consider this occupation not worthless. Is it really? Let’s take a look at some myths rooted in our lives.

    • Using a working TV as white noise when laying down to sleep. It has already been noted that rapidly changing bright images on the screen not only do not contribute to falling asleep, but, on the contrary, give rise to overexcitation. Preparation for bed should take place in a darkened room, without extraneous noise, in a relaxed atmosphere.
    • Early psycho-emotional development. No developing cartoon, let alone transmission, will affect the development of the child in the way that loved ones can do, using songs, nursery rhymes, fun games and walks.

    Watching such programs is only a way of complacency for parents who believe that their one and a half year old baby supposedly gets new knowledge along with “Little Kids” or “Fixics”. Only after two years the child is able to isolate at least some useful information and generally understand the meaning of what is happening in the frame.

  • Due to their development, newborns do not respond to TV. In fact, if you look at your baby, you will notice that for a loud sound or a bright flash, the baby turns its head to their source. Frequent exposure to stimuli of this kind is fraught with neurological disorders in the future.
  • Irradiation. The story of radiation originates from the distant 1960s, when one batch of General Electric TVs showed radiation in excess of permissible limits during research. Modern TVs, regardless of brand, price, number of inches of the screen from the point of view of radiation are absolutely safe, it is not.
  • Anna Remish, science columnist: When can a child start watching the desired cartoons: after a year, after 2 or later? Psychologists and scientists are unanimous: at least up to 2 years (but the later, the better) children can not be introduced to TV or modern gadgets. Why?

    Recommendations of Russian psychologists

    • Doctor of Psychology, professor, specialist in the field of child psychology and developmental psychology Elena Smirnova: “At this age (up to 3 years old. Ed.) In children, perception is so arranged: they will watch everything that you show! Whether it’s cartoons, commercials, pornography, it’s all the same! The content is not important here. It is important that something flickers on the screen, and they just follow this flicker. Children do not watch a movie, their perception is purely sensory, and this thing is very dangerous, because at the same time the development of the cortical parts of the brain is blocked, the neural chains that should develop do not develop (.) Those activities in which development should take place at this age, in particular, substantive activity ” [1]. These words confirm the results of a study conducted in the United States, when children of 6, 12 and 18 months were divided into age groups and put in front of a TV that showed cartoons with the usual and reverse sequence of frames (that is, first to the end and from the end to the beginning). At the same time, only the oldest kids preferred the right content [2]. True, this does not mean that they are more picky. Studies show that a child under 2 years old cannot cognitively understand whatexactly happens on the screen and remember this, which means that he is simply fascinated by the change of pictures or colors, which already looks like a zombie.
    • Academician RAMTN, head of the clinical association of centers for the protection of vision of children and adolescents “Clear Look”, ophthalmologist Igor Aznauryan: “Children under 2 years old are generally not recommended to watch TV. This is due not only to eye strain, but also to the effect of television on the central nervous system, which can lead to excessive excitement of the child. This is especially affected by commercials. Of course, they attract the baby with bright, quickly changing pictures (.) But in this case there is much less benefit than harm. The total duration of watching television programs for children over 2 years old should not exceed 30 minutes per day. Children from 3 to 7 years old can watch TV no more than 40-50 minutes a day; from 7 to 13 years old. No more than 2 hours per day (while continuous load should be no more than 1.5 hours per day) ” [3].
    • Head of the coordination and analytical department of the Moscow city Center for psychological and pedagogical examination of games and toys at Moscow State Pedagogical University, psychologist Natalya Matushkina: “Watching cartoons by young children (up to 2 years old) can cause irreversible changes in the psyche. At this age, the content of the cartoon is not perceived by the child. ” [4].

    Opinion of pediatricians from the American Academy of Pediatrics
    American pediatricians are seriously fighting the TV and gadgets in young children. Based on dozens of studies, they developed pretty tough recommendations:

    • Children under 18 months of age are prohibited from any content (including communication with relatives via Skype).
    • Parents of children aged 18-24 months who want to introduce their babies to the possibilities of digital devices (we are talking about learning or talking with relatives, not cartoons) should choose only high-quality content and use it together with the children, because observing the actions an adult is the best way to learn for a child.
    • It is very difficult for young children to establish a relationship between what they see on the screen and the world around them. And, although children older than 15-18 months are able to learn with the help of high-quality computer programs, this can only be done if the parents yourself ready to engage in such training.
    • A child under 2 years old should not be left alone with gadgets or with a TV.
    • Children from 2 to 5 years old need a significant limitation of the time they spend at the screen: no more than 1 hour per day. Over, in the bedroom where the baby sleeps, there should not be a TV, computer or smartphones [5], [6].

    Why is it so important to survive without a TV for at least 2 years? We have already written that watching cartoons with food can lead to obesity in the future. Over, “planting” in front of the TV from young nails can come back to attention, for example, problems with concentration. “Often parents are shocked,. Says an American pediatrician, vice president of the association of pediatricians in Wilmington David hill. When I tell them that children‘s doctors are opposed to having babies under 18 months old watching TV or playing with gadgets. Studies show that 92.2% of one-year-old Americans have ever had an electronic device in their hands, while some have started to do this as early as 4 months old! Of course, parents believe that their children like it, but the fact is that the child can stare at the bright colors or moving figures on the screen, but his brain is not able to understand the meaning or meaning of these actions. Studies show that viewing any content under the age of 18 months has very negative consequences for the development of speech skills, short-term memory and reading ability, and also affects the occurrence of problems with sleep and concentration. All this is complicated by the fact that children learn only in interaction with other people. And, if one of the parties watches TV at this time, communication (respectively, and training, too) stops ” [7].

    Scientific research
    In 2014, 276 volunteers aged 5-18 who watched TV for up to 4 hours a day (on average 2 hours) took part in a study from Tohoku University (Japan). Scientists made him an MRI of the brain, after which they analyzed the results and came to the conclusion: the longer the child watched TV, the more it affected the development of his brain, up to a decrease in verbal intelligence [8].

    In 2013, scientists from New Zealand studied the first 26 years of life of more than 1000 people and found that the fact of watching TV for a long time in early childhood (children from 5 years old took part in the study) increased the likelihood of a criminal record and the development of associative features in the future. For example, every “extra” hour spent in front of a television screen increased the risk of a criminal record by 30% [9].

    In 2005, a study was published on the relationship of watching TV with sleep disturbances in children under 3 years old. After studying more than 2000 babies, the researchers found that “watching TV with infants and young children is associated with a violation of the regularity of their sleep patterns. However, for more accurate conclusions, additional studies are needed ”[10].