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In the digital age, pediatricians tweak screen time rules

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Palm Beach Post

The American Academy of Pediatrics has some bad news for parents relying on the television or computer to babysit their kids: two hours of screen time may be too much.

“It doesn’t make sense to make a blanket statement [of two hours] of screen time anymore,” said Dr. Yolanda Reid Chassiakos, lead author of the “Children and Adolescents and Digital Media Technical Report” and assistant professor at UCLA.

There is nothing cute about the toddler at the table next to you playing with mommy’s cellphone.

Babies under 18 months should be kept from all digital devices, the researcher said. “The TV should not be a babysitter,” she said. “It’s much better to talk to a child or read from a book.”

Children 2 to 5 years of age should be limited to one hour a day and older children should have defined restrictions by their parents on screen time, Chassiakos added.

For healthy kids, an average day includes “school, homework time, at least one hour of physical activity, social contact and sleep — which is anywhere from eight to 12 hours for kids, said Chassiakos.

“Whatever’s left over can be screen time,” she said.

Read the whole CNN story by clicking here.

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