With the advancement of mobile devices from phones to tablets more and more kids are being introduced to them at a young age. It can be easy to have your kid just watch a video, look through photos or play games on your mobile device, but should you be putting limitations on these interactions? Up until recently, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) suggested that children under 2 years of age should not be exposed to any digital devices, but have now reversed their decision. The No Screens Under 2 reversal, has made navigating issues like this confusing at times with parents having more questions than ever.
To help parents with small and young kids have a better understanding on this subject, the Center for Innovative Public Health Research has put together this infographic on screen time recommendations for kids from infants to 6+ years old. These will be potential hours they should spend or the types of media they should be consuming. Enjoy!
To give you a better idea of where these screen time limitations should come in, let us break it down for you a little.
Screen Time Recommendations for Kids
Some video-chatting done with parental supervision can be OK, otherwise, screen time for infants to 18-month-olds is not fully recommended. During these months bonding with your child is extremely important and allowing screen time can interfere with their sleep patterns, which can drastically affect your child’s mood.
Interactive media is the preferred option if you will be allowing any screen time. Ultimately you still want your toddler to learn and play without screens, as they learn the best by interacting with their world and people around them.
At this phase of their life, 1-hour of screen time can be acceptable. It is recommended to watch more informational and learning shows, such as Sesame Street. During this time parents should be watching and interacting with their kids as well. It will really go a long way to reinforce some of the lessons they learn while interacting with their kids too. It is not recommended to show cartoons or shows that could be overly confusing to kids since they are still learning so much that will go into their development.
Screen time is more acceptable, but you should still put some guidelines in place on when and where your kids can use them. For instance, set up screen-free zones in your house so your kids know that when they are in these areas electronics are not allowed. You can also implement only specific hours for TV shows and if they have phones, make sure to charge them in an area overnight like the kitchen so that they are able to get a good night’s sleep without any potential interruption.
As technology advances and more studies can be done to see the long-term effects screen time can have on infants, kids and young adults in our society, we as parents will just need to be more self-aware of limiting screen usage. By getting a good understanding of screen time recommendations for kids will go a long way in showing your child what healthy interaction with electronics should be like.