Childhood 'screen time' warning

A new report has found that young children are being overexposed to screens at an early age which could to health problems in later life.

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Children under three 'should be banned from watching TV'

Dr Aric Sigman - who is also a child health expert - has made a raft of suggestions for children's screen consumption including delaying the age children start using screens to at least three.

Children aged between three and seven should be limited to half-an-hour to an hour of screen time each day, he said.

Those aged seven to 12 should spend just one hour in front of screens.

Children aged 12 to 15 should have a maximum of 1.5 hours in front of screens and those aged 16 and over should spend just two hours, he recommends.

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Study: More parents use 'screens' as an electronic babysitter

Writing in the Archives Of Disease In Childhood, Dr Sigman said such extensive use of televisions and tablets could also lead to attention problems and other psychological difficulties.

Parents are using 'tablets' as electronic babysitters, experts have warned Credit: Paul Faith/PA Wire

The amount of time spent in front of a screen could also adversely affect children's social relationships.

He said many parents use the devices as "electronic babysitters" as a means to occupy their children.

"Screen time appears to have created the three-parent family," he added.

Experts call for limit on children's screen time

Limiting the amount of time children spend in front of a screen could have significant advantages for their health and wellbeing, a leading psychologist has said.

The population's vast use of games consoles, tablet computers, televisions, smart phones and laptops has been linked to obesity problems and an increased risk of cardiovascular disease and Type 2 diabetes, he warned.

Too much 'screen time' for children is causing long-term health problems, warn experts

Young children are being overexposed to screens at an early age which could to health problems in later life, experts have warned.

Children are watching too much TV, a report has found Credit: Peter Byrne/PA Wire

By the age of seven, a child born today will have spent a full year glued to screens, according to leading health psychologist Dr Aric Sigman.

The average 10-year-old has at least five screens readily available to them at home, and over the course of childhood youngsters spend more time watching TV than they spend in school, he said.

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