All mothers who are used to "getting rid" of their children with their Smartphone in their hands, now have to be really concerned and careful.
Your smartphone or tablet is one of the best tranquilizers for children, but next time you should think twice before giving one of these devices to your child. According to some new studies, published in Scientific Reports, daily use of touch screen devices can have serious effects on children's sleep.
Researchers found that every hour a child spends on an electronic device can result in approximately 15 minutes of sleep per day, and this result is very alarming for children up to 3 years of age, as sleep can greatly affect their development.
" One surprising finding was that although they slept on average more during the day, children up to 3 years of age who spent more time with the touchscreen still spent less overall sleep time," said study co-author Celeste Cheung, according to Real Simple. Cheung works as a research fellow at Birkbeck University in London, where he studied. " As a result, they can't get enough sleep during the day ."
The study, which collected information from 715 parents, focused on the frequency of day-to-day touch screen devices in children from 6 to 36 months. The parents conducted an online survey, reporting on sleeping and the use of equipment by their children. The researchers then analyzed the data, controlling for gender, age, mum's education level, and time in front of the television. The results were impressive. Approximately 92 percent of children between the ages of 25 and 36 months use a digital display daily, and on average, children use the equipment approximately 25 minutes a day.
A possible scientific explanation for how touch screen devices damage sleep? The blue light coming out of the screens can stop the production of melantonin, the hormone that regulates sleep rhythms. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, children under 1.5 have been talking for years now, should not spend any time in front of the screen, while children 2 to 5 should spend no more than an hour a day.
However, there is not only bad news. The study also found that children who actively used screens, sliding fingers and playing games, developed hand-to-hand coordination with fingers and eyes faster than children who did not use screens. Of course, nothing can be said for sure at this stage, but as Cheung puts it, "parents should not worry, but be alert to the potential impact of touch screen devices, both positive and negative."