Mondays for Moms: New study shows how too much screen time for toddlers can damage their reading skills

Mondays for Moms

LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – In this week’s Mondays for Moms, we’re going to get a deeper dive into healthy screen time.

Many parents often struggle to put limits on how much time their children spend on screens, and new research shows why that battle could make a difference that lasts a lifetime.

Brae Anne McArthur is a clinical psychologist at the University of Calgary in Alberta, Canada. Her research identified a vicious cycle between screen time and reading.

The research showed that children who were using higher levels of screen time at age 2 were having lower levels of reading at age 3, which then predicted higher levels of screen use at age 5.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends for children ages two to five, limiting their screen use to one hour per day.

For children under 18 months, no screen time at all, except video chatting.

One way to encourage more reading is for parents to lead by example.

“These early reading skills are quite predictive of how children will do later in school, whether they’ll graduate from high school, whether they’ll be successful in different aspects of adult life,” said McArthur.

 Screen time in this study included a range of activities, including TV, computers, and video games.

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