A rather dubious study conducted by (obviously bored) British researchers claims that excessive TV watching and gaming could put a child at “greater risk” for psychological problems.
“We know that physical activity is good for both physical and mental health in children and there is some evidence that screen viewing is associated with negative behaviors,” lead researcher Dr. Angie Page of the University of Bristol told Reuters.
“But it wasn’t clear whether having high physical activity levels would ‘compensate’ for high levels of screen viewing in children.”
Still, Page insisted that the odds of “significant psychological difficulties” were about 60 percent higher for children spending longer than two hours a day in front of either a gaming or television screen.
And for children with more than two hours of both types of screen time during the day, the odds more than doubled.
However, Dr. Thomas N. Robinson of the Stanford University School of Medicine (who was not involved in the study), emphasized that Page’s research was insufficient to prove a direct correlation between screen time and psychological well-being.
“[She] would have needed to do an experiment, a randomized controlled trial, to see whether limiting television or computer time improves psychological difficulties when compared to a control group that does not limit screen time.
“[Nevertheless], parents as well as kids tell us that budgeting kids’ screen time has [had] profound positive effects on their families’ lives,” he added.