Too much screen time leads to psychological problems

Carol’s Summary:

A new study suggests children who spend more than two hours a day watching television or playing computer games may be at a higher risk for psychological problems, regardless of the child’s sex, age, stage of puberty, level of education, poverty level, or activity during the day.

Over 1,000 kids between the ages of 10 and 11 were asked to fill out questionnaires describing their mental states after watching television or gaming. The study found children who spent longer than two hours a day engaged in these activities raised the odds of having psychological difficulties by 60 percent.

The study also found that even though physical activity didn’t compensate for the damage done after watching television or gaming, psychological problems were further increased if the child had under an hour of physical activity a day.

Dr. Thomas N. Robinson of the Stanford University School of Medicine, says there needs to be further research comparing a control group of children who limit screen time with a group that does not limit screen time before being able to decipher if there is a correlation. Robinson is conducting related research and agrees his research is showing similar results that limiting screen time leads to reduction in weight and aggression in children.

What happens to students who have spent as many as twelve or more mind-numbing years in front of the T.V? This reminds me of one of my first coaching clients from ten years ago.  Her parents brought her to me after she graduated from high school because they couldn’t get her off the couch where she was glued to the TV.  In our first session I asked if she would be willing to turn off the TV for just one week. She agreed, shook my hand and left my office. One week later, she came back, eyes alive and full of stories about how she had spent her week. Three months later, she was enrolled in a fire science program, secured a job as an administrative assistant and moved into her own apartment. I am a big believer that getting students engaged to do meaningful work is the key to success.

Article: Mental problems rise with kids’ screen time: study

(Reuters Health) – More than two hours a day spent watching television or playing computer games could put a child at greater risk for psychological problems, suggests a new study.

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