For children 2 to 5 years, limit the use of the screen to 1 hour per day of high quality programs.
'Given that screen-based media use is ubiquitous and increasing in children in home, childcare, and school settings, these findings suggest the need for further study to identify the implications for the developing brain, particularly during stages of dynamic brain growth in early childhood'. In other words, the connections were stronger between different networks in those children's brains. These children also had lower scores on language and literacy measures.
"Parents of children 18 to 24 months of age who want to introduce digital media should choose high-quality programming, and watch it with their children to help them understand what they're seeing", the AAP guidelines read. "Kids who report five hours of screen time could have parents who use 10 hours of screen time. Put that together and there's nearly no time for them to interact with each other". The "ScreenQ" assessment included the child's access to screens (such as the location), their frequency of use, the content (such as educational or violent content), and whether the caregiver watched with their child and talked with them about what they were watching. So, kids can take screens to bed, meals, auto and even playground, Dr Hutton pointed out.
"It's very much like reading a story to a child".More news: Former Karnataka players Gautam, Qazi arrested in KPL spot-fixing scandal
"About 90% are using screens by age one", said Hutton, who published a number of studies that used MRIs to research the impact of reading versus screen use by kids. He noted that in some studies that he's been involved in, kids as young as two or three months old were using screens. White matter is made up of fibers, typically distributed into bundles called tracts, which form connections between brain cells and the rest of the nervous system.
Hutton said this type of study does not prove causality, since it does not show whether screen exposure causes these measures of the brain to be lower.
Scans done of these children revealed that those who were placed in front of a screen for more than one hour per day without their parents being involved had a problem with the white matter of their brains.
"The average screen time in these kids was a little over two hours a day", Hutton said. In them, the tracts of white matter responsible for executive functions were also disorganised and underdeveloped.More news: Prince Harry's son is crawling
"So many people have smartphones and TVs - anecdotally, we know screen time may be significant in some homes", Gupta said. "So the imaging findings lined up pretty perfectly with the behavioral cognitive testing finding".
And in teenagers and adults, "small doses of screen time can be a mental health-positive way of relaxing, reducing stress, and connecting socially to friends and family members".
They also assessed children on standard cognitive tests and found that higher screen scores appeared associated with lower expressive language, the ability to quickly name objects, and literacy skills.
"Remember that this is all relative", Hutton said, adding that more in-depth clinical trials need to be done to tease out the specifics.More news: Tesla’s latest software update brings support for traffic cones to AutoPilot
"Still, it's possible that over over time, these effects can add up", Hutton said. Parents should see the media together with the children to help them understand what they are seeing and apply it to the world around them.