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Studies indicate excessive television may increase aggression, anxiety and withdrawal from society in children

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How Many Hours Does the Average Child Watch TV?

by Kristie Sweet, Demand Media

  • Children may spend an average of seven hours daily using entertainment media like televisions.

Children may spend an average of seven hours daily using entertainment media like televisions.

Jupiterimages/Creatas/Getty Images

In 1966, television producer Joan Cooney heard someone at a party bemoan the effect television was having on his daughter, who would sit for hours watching the test patterns. That conversation eventually prompted Cooney to develop the children's program "Sesame Street." Years later, parents still worry about the dangers of letting their children watch TV. How much do modern children watch?

Ages

According to Nielsen statistics for 2011, teenagers ages 12 to 17 spend about 100 hours watching television each month. Children between the ages of two and 11 watch even more TV, an average of 109 hours and six minutes each month. Although these numbers may seem high, they do indicate a reduction from the previous year when teens clocked 105 monthly hours and younger children viewed 112 hours and 46 minutes of television each month.

Other Media

When DVD, DVR, video and game console viewing is added to the mix, the numbers clearly rise. A University of Michigan study found children ages six to 11 used televisions for about 28 hours each week for such activities. But preschoolers spend even more time engaged in videos and gaming - 32 hours each week. These numbers indicate elementary-aged children use videos and games for about seven hours each month, while those under six spend about 16 hours during the month on these actions.

Effects

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, children over the age of two should watch television for only one or two hours per day, about half the current average. Higher amounts of television use can lead to problems concentrating, obesity, eating disorders and sleeping difficulties. Some studies also indicate excessive television may increase aggression, anxiety and withdrawal from society. Children might even mimic behaviors that demonstrate gender and racial bias, or risky activities such as smoking and drinking and promiscuity.

Recommendations

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends parents avoid television entirely for children under the age of two in order to avoid negative impact on the fast-paced brain development during this stage. Parents can cut down the amount of TV for older children by engaging them in other activities such as reading, sports and outdoor play, and by removing televisions from children's bedrooms. Setting aside rooms in the house as television-free zones - or certain times as TV-free periods - can reduce TV's negative effects.

References

About the Author

Kristie Sweet has been writing professionally since 1982, most recently publishing for various websites on topics like health and wellness, and education. She holds a Master of Arts in English from the University of Northern Colorado.

Photo Credits

  • Jupiterimages/Creatas/Getty Images
by on Feb. 26, 2013 at 2:58 PM
Replies (51-52):
furbabymum
by Gold Member on Mar. 11, 2013 at 10:27 PM

Perhaps you should actually read it before making comments:


John P. Murray, Ph.D.,is an Emeritus Professor of Developmental Psychology, in the
School of Family Studies and Human Servicesat Kansas State University and Visiting Scholar in the Center on Media and Child Health at Children’s Hospital Boston. Hereceived his Ph.D. in Psychology from The Catholic University of America in 1970 and took Postdoctoral training in
Pediatric Psychology at the University of North Carolina Medical School in 1972. He has conducted research and taught at the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) in Washington,DC; the University of North Carolina;Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia; the University of Michigan; the Boys Town Center for the Study of Youth Development; Kansas State University; the Mind Science Foundation in San Antonio, TX; and the Center on Media and Child Health at Children’s Hospital Boston, Harvard Medical School.

Ann D. Murray, Ph.D.,is an Associate Professor of Developmental Psychology in the School of Family Studies and Human Services at Kansas State University. She received her Ph.D. in Psychology from Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia in 1978. She has conducted research on infants and toddlers at the Crown Street Women’s Hospital in Sydney, Australia; the Boys Town National Institute for Communication Disorders in Children in Omaha, Nebraska; the Child Language Program at the University of Kansas; and the Early Childhood Education program at Kansas State University.

They are indeed Dr.'s of psychology. They studied. I simply cited a different study in addition to theirs that was indeed done by economists.
Quoting TruthSeeker.:

 This isn't a study and they are not scientists. They are economist "exploring" the "possibility" that tv "may" "trigger" Autism.

 Some Dr's believe vaccines trigger Autism. Should vaccines be discontinued? There have also been studies that suggest living within one mile of an interstate may trigger also. And another study that the father's age may cause Autism.  None of these studies have found the Cause of Autism as it is still unknown.

 Tv does not cause Autism. This paper(not study) is nothing more than correlation.

Quoting furbabymum:

 Ok. Here we go. You will notice I said it was related originally.


http://krex.k-state.edu/dspace/bitstream/handle/2097/874/MurrayEncyArticle.pdf?sequence=4

"that early TV viewing can facilitate the induction of Autism in young children."

"Following on this research, a team of economists led by Michael Waldman at Cornell University, explored the possibility that extensive television viewing in infancy and early childhood might serve as a "trigger" for the development of autism in young children. This is a highly controversial proposition, but the authors provide interesting statistical analyses showing correlations between autism rates at the county level in California, Oregon, Washington, and Pennsylvania and variables that should be correlated with early childhood television viewing. "

This study is really comprehensive. It's from 2008 so there is more recent research.

Here is a discovery health article: http://health.howstuffworks.com/mental-health/autism/tv-autism.htm

Again Television is mentioned as a trigger and certainly negative influence related to autism.

I could go on but if you refuse to believe this there isn't much hope you'll change your mind at all.

Quoting TruthSeeker.:

  Yes, really. And if you have some studies feel free to post them. 

Quoting furbabymum:

Really because I read several studies that contradict you.

Quoting TruthSeeker.:


Quoting furbabymum:

 Well duh. ADHD didn't just pop up. How is a kid supposed to go to school and concentrate when he's been plopped in front of a television with constant stimulation at home. Autism can even be related back to television.

Of course proponents of TV will talk non-stop about how educational and good for their kids it is. Uh huh. I am disgusted at the amount of people buying their kids tablets. Get them a book, it's better for them.

 Autism is a neurological condition that has Nothing to do with television. You should be careful about spreading that kind of misinformation.


 

 

 


TruthSeeker.
by Milami on Mar. 11, 2013 at 10:39 PM

  You cited a "paper" written by economists that proved Nothing. Correlation does not equal causation. Keep digging. You will not find a study that proves tv causes Autism as I stated in my very first reply to you.  

Quoting furbabymum:

Perhaps you should actually read it before making comments:

 

John P. Murray, Ph.D.,is an Emeritus Professor of Developmental Psychology, in the
School of Family Studies and Human Servicesat Kansas State University and Visiting Scholar in the Center on Media and Child Health at Children’s Hospital Boston. Hereceived his Ph.D. in Psychology from The Catholic University of America in 1970 and took Postdoctoral training in
Pediatric Psychology at the University of North Carolina Medical School in 1972. He has conducted research and taught at the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) in Washington,DC; the University of North Carolina;Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia; the University of Michigan; the Boys Town Center for the Study of Youth Development; Kansas State University; the Mind Science Foundation in San Antonio, TX; and the Center on Media and Child Health at Children’s Hospital Boston, Harvard Medical School.

Ann D. Murray, Ph.D.,is an Associate Professor of Developmental Psychology in the School of Family Studies and Human Services at Kansas State University. She received her Ph.D. in Psychology from Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia in 1978. She has conducted research on infants and toddlers at the Crown Street Women’s Hospital in Sydney, Australia; the Boys Town National Institute for Communication Disorders in Children in Omaha, Nebraska; the Child Language Program at the University of Kansas; and the Early Childhood Education program at Kansas State University.

They are indeed Dr.'s of psychology. They studied. I simply cited a different study in addition to theirs that was indeed done by economists.
Quoting TruthSeeker.:

 This isn't a study and they are not scientists. They are economist "exploring" the "possibility" that tv "may" "trigger" Autism.

 Some Dr's believe vaccines trigger Autism. Should vaccines be discontinued? There have also been studies that suggest living within one mile of an interstate may trigger also. And another study that the father's age may cause Autism.  None of these studies have found the Cause of Autism as it is still unknown.

 Tv does not cause Autism. This paper(not study) is nothing more than correlation.

Quoting furbabymum:

 Ok. Here we go. You will notice I said it was related originally.

 

http://krex.k-state.edu/dspace/bitstream/handle/2097/874/MurrayEncyArticle.pdf?sequence=4

"that early TV viewing can facilitate the induction of Autism in young children."

"Following on this research, a team of economists led by Michael Waldman at Cornell University, explored the possibility that extensive television viewing in infancy and early childhood might serve as a "trigger" for the development of autism in young children. This is a highly controversial proposition, but the authors provide interesting statistical analyses showing correlations between autism rates at the county level in California, Oregon, Washington, and Pennsylvania and variables that should be correlated with early childhood television viewing. "

This study is really comprehensive. It's from 2008 so there is more recent research.

Here is a discovery health article: http://health.howstuffworks.com/mental-health/autism/tv-autism.htm

Again Television is mentioned as a trigger and certainly negative influence related to autism.

I could go on but if you refuse to believe this there isn't much hope you'll change your mind at all.

Quoting TruthSeeker.:

  Yes, really. And if you have some studies feel free to post them. 

Quoting furbabymum:

Really because I read several studies that contradict you.

Quoting TruthSeeker.:


Quoting furbabymum:

 Well duh. ADHD didn't just pop up. How is a kid supposed to go to school and concentrate when he's been plopped in front of a television with constant stimulation at home. Autism can even be related back to television.

Of course proponents of TV will talk non-stop about how educational and good for their kids it is. Uh huh. I am disgusted at the amount of people buying their kids tablets. Get them a book, it's better for them.

 Autism is a neurological condition that has Nothing to do with television. You should be careful about spreading that kind of misinformation.


 

 

 


 

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