Two or more hours of daily screen time tied to lower well-being in preschoolers

Among U.S. preschoolers, two hours or more of daily screen time are associated with lower psychological well-being, according to a study published online March 5 in JAMA Network Open.

Soyang Kwon, Ph.D., from the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago, and colleagues evaluated screen time in the prepandemic (2018 and 2019) and pandemic (2020 and 2021) periods to examine the relationship between screen time and psychological well-being among young U.S. children aged 6 months to 5 years.

The analysis included daily screen time reported by 48,775 participants’ primary caregivers participating in the 2018 to 2021 National Survey of Children’s Health.

The researchers found that among children living in poverty (federal poverty level <100 percent), the proportion of those with high screen time (at least four hours daily) was 48.7 percent in 2018, 52.0 percent in 2019, 60.9 percent in 2020, and 58.9 percent in 2021.

Compared with one hour per day of screen time for children ages 3 to 5 years, the odds of flourishing differed by length of screen time (less than one hour: adjusted odds ratio [aOR], 0.66; two hours: aOR, 0.81; three hours: aOR, 0.68; at least four hours: aOR, 0.53). There was no association between screen time and flourishing among children aged 6 months to 2 years.

Compared with one hour per day of screen time among children ages 3 to 5 years, an adjusted externalizing behavior score was higher for all screen time frequencies.

“Two hours or more of daily screen time was associated with lower psychological well-being among preschool-aged children,” the authors write.

More information:
Soyang Kwon et al, Screen Time, Sociodemographic Factors, and Psychological Well-Being Among Young Children, JAMA Network Open (2024). DOI: 10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2023.54488

Copyright 2024 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Citation:
Two or more hours of daily screen time tied to lower well-being in preschoolers (2024, March 13)