Risk to children when TV is in bedroom

Risk to children when TV is in bedroom


[intro music] We’ve known for decades that, of course,
the amount of time children watch television and the types of television
and other media that they watch can have a number of effects. And we’ve also been
worried for decades that having a television in the bedroom or video
games in the bedroom might change those effects in some way, but we haven’t had a
good way to really directly test that in the past. So this study used three
different longitudinal studies following kids for up to two years. And not just in
America, we also had Singaporean children too – so we’re different sides of the planet
and we were able to test is there a ripple effect from just putting the
media in children’s bedroom that goes through to outcomes later in time and
we found in fact in this study that it has a really powerful ripple effect that
having TV or video games in the bedroom changes how much time children spend
with them, it changes what they watch and then we can see that effect in a number
of outcomes. So having a TV in the bedroom predicts poor school performance,
predicts a higher risk for obesity predicts a greater likelihood of what’s
being called video game addiction, predicts greater aggressive behavior. And
it’s not just because you know of what they’re watching or how much they’re
watching, it’s once they have it in their bedroom they’re watching it away from
parents, so the parents aren’t able to monitor what they’re seeing, aren’t able
to be consistent with children’s rules for what or how much they’re allowed to
watch. The American Academy of Pediatrics had said since at least 1999 that
children should not have media in their bedrooms and this study shows they were
exactly right. So it’s even harder now than it was then because not only do we
have TV and video games we have cell phones and iPads, so at least parents
should probably be taking them out of children’s bedrooms at night to charge,
so they’re not looking them all night long, but if you’ve got
computers and video games and TV in the bedroom is it worth the fight taking
them out? Well, this study shows it probably is.


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