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Language Delays in Toddlers - Impacts of Screen Media???

Exposure to digital media in family life is increasing, as are concerns about how screen time affects children and families. We can not deny the importance and usefulness of digital media (including smart phones, tablets, television, video games, computers or wearable technology). However, for children younger than 5 years old, the use of screen media may affect negatively to their development.

Language Delays in Toddlers - Impacts of Screen Media???

Exposure to digital media in family life is increasing, as are concerns about how screen time affects children and families. We can not deny the importance and usefulness of digital media (including smart phones, tablets, television, video games, computers or wearable technology). However, for children younger than 5 years old, the use of screen media may affect negatively to their development. 

 Language delays - more than 2 hours/day by infants younger than 12 months
 Attentional difficulties – more than 7 hours/day (there has not been evidence for less than 7 hours);
 In  adiition, even when CHILDREN DO NOT WATCH TV directly but they live and play in a room that has TV turning on all day, h
igh exposure to background TV has been found to negatively affect language use and acquisition, attention, cognitive development and executive function in children younger than 5 years;
 Less social interation, Fast-paced or violent content can negatively impact executive function, and these effects may be cumulative;
 Dependence: must watch TV when eating, crying when being refused to watch TV...;
 Obesity due to lack of exercise;
 Sleep disorders;
 Eyestrain, myopia
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 RECOMMENDATIONS (ACCORDING TO AAP* & CPS*)

 For children younger than 18 months, use of screen media should be discouraged; 
 For children 18 months to 24 months of age: screen time is not recommened; but if parents who want to introduce digital media should choose high-quality programming/apps and use them together with children;  
 For children 2 to 5 years, limit routine or regular screen time to less than 1 hour per day. Parents should co-view , co-play and find other activities to do together that are healthy for the body & mind (e.g,. reading, teaching, talking and playing together);
 Children more than 5 years old need adequate sleep (8-12 hours, depending on age), physical activity (at least 1 hour) and time away from media (e.g, studying, playing outdoor activities);  
 Avoid screens for at least 1 hour before bed time, 
given the potential for melatonin-suppressing effects;
 Parents are encouraged to develop personalized media use plans for their children (e.g, how long and when can their children use smartphones per day );
 Parents should be children's good example by minimizing their own screen use when young children are present , especially for mealtimes, play and other prime opportunities for social learning. 
 Turn off TV during family time, or limit turning on TV constantly when not in use.
 Children should not sleep with devices in their bedrooms, including TVs, computers, and smartphones. 

 REMEMBER: TOO MUCH SCREEN TIME MEANS LOST OPPORTUNITIES FOR TEACHING AND LEARNING!

 Dr. Lai Thi Bich Thuy - Pediatricians of #CarePlus International Clinics

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 Reference: 
1. Screen time and young children: Promoting health and development in a digital world
(https://www.cps.ca/…/position/screen-time-and-young-children)
2. Where We Stand: Screen Time
(https://www.healthychildren.org/…/Where-We-Stand-TV-Viewing…)
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