Tablets and Smartphone Usage In Kids Affect Sleep, Study Says


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Smartphone usage in kids has become a popular and effective strategy that parents use to distract their kids, especially when they need to attend to their work. I’m guilty of that. As a work-at-home mom, I get to be with my kid, 24/7 but that also means that he gets to interrupt my work from time to time. At times, I can’t get things done because he just wants my attention. And I wouldn’t and couldn’t turn him away.

I vowed back then that I will never let Kai become dependent on tablets but I guess I broke that vow. It started with just a little video watching then it developed into something that he really loves. That’s not to say nothing good came from it. He learned a lot of things just from watching YouTube videos for kids. But at times he can get to sleep really late. It would be evident that he’s feeling sleepy already but he just fights the drowsiness. Could this be caused by too much screen time? According to a study, yes.

Smartphone usage in kids has become an effective strategy for parents to distract their toddlers.

smartphone usage in kids can affect their sleep time
Wikimedia Commons

An online survey conducted on toddlers reveals that for every hour of screen time, a child could lose 16 minutes of sleep. On average, children use the mobile devices about 25 minutes every day, which means that they would lose six minutes of sleep. It remains unclear why mobile device usage results to lack of sleep but this could be due to overly stimulated minds.

A study reveals that too much screen time can also affect a kid’s ability to finish a homework.

Brad Flickinger/Flickr

Not only is sleep time affected but also kids’ tendency to finish homework. Children who spend two to four hours a day are 23 percent less likely to complete their school work.

But tablet and smartphone usage in kids aren’t all that bad in some cases. Earlier studies reveal that babies exposed to touchscreens can develop motor skills much faster. According to lead research Dr. Tim Smith, touchscreen use can also have benefits. He said:

“Before totally restricting touchscreen use, which might have potential benefits, we need to understand in depth how to use this modern technology in a way that maximizes benefits and minimizes any negative consequences for young children.”

[Featured Image by Tia Henrikson/Flickr]

h/t: Mail Online

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