Doing Life Together

Doing Life Together


Teens and TV: Are They Overdoing It?

posted by Linda Mintle

Raising Healthy KidsBy now, most of you are aware that too much screen viewing for children and teens is linked to  elevated blood pressure, high cholesterol, lack of sleep, school problems, aggression, and being overweight. And we know that teen viewing habits often carry over to adult viewing habits.

So how are teens doing with the American Academy of Pediatricians’ recommendation to limit screen time to two hours or less a day. Yes, that is ALL screens. Furthermore, children under the age of two are supposed to have ZERO hours of screen time.

The 2012 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) and the 2012 National Youth Fitness Survey reports the following:

  • 31% of youths that are normal or underweight are meeting the guideline  (this includes computer use)
  • 23% of overweight and 20% of obese youths are meeting the guideline
  • 99% of teens report watching TV every day
  • 91% of teens report using their computers every day outside of school
  • Gender differences for the amount of TV viewing were not significant, meaning there was little difference between boys and girls
  • A break down of TV habits by race and Hispanic origin show 29% white, 26% Hispanic and 20% black teens meet daily screen-time requirements

Clearly, we still have work to do when it comes to limiting screen usage. And keep in mind these numbers could be low given it is difficult to capture screen usage with all the possible devices kids and teens could be using.

In my book, Raising Healthy Kids in an Unhealthy World, I encourage all parents to make a media plan and list several suggestions. Here are 5:

1) Take TV out of a child’s bedroom.

2) Find the “good media”. The right kind of media can improve learning and teach empathy, tolerance and interpersonal skills

3) Model good media usage as a parent. Kids watch what you do to learn.

4) Turn off the TV during meals and don’t have it on for background noise.

5) Bypass commercials in order to limit exposure to junk foods and other unhealthy choices.

 



Previous Posts

Treating Binge Eating With Medication?
Every day Sally vows she will not eat herself sick. But today is no different. She is distressed, eating past full and feeling as if she has no control. Sally suffers from Binge Eating Disorder (BED) which has been recognized as a psychiatric disorder. To date, there are no medications approved f

posted 6:00:35am Jan. 26, 2015 | read full post »

Is Binge Drinking Just College Fun?
In the throws of January, college students begin dreaming about Spring Break. Those plans often include partying on a beach with nonstop drinking. Binge drinking is "a pattern of drinking that brings blood alcohol concentration (BAC) levels to 0.08 g/dL. This typically occurs after 4 drinks for w

posted 6:00:57am Jan. 23, 2015 | read full post »

Does the Cold Make You Catch a Cold?
My mom used to tell me to put a hat on my baby when the weather was cold. I used to argue, "Mom, babies don't catch colds from the cold. They get them from viruses. I'm not putting a hat on the baby." But now it seems that my mom could have been on to something. Could the cold weather actually p

posted 6:00:36am Jan. 21, 2015 | read full post »

How Often Should I Weigh Myself?
We all know that the number on the scale isn't suppose to define us, but that doesn't stop us from thinking about how much we weigh on any given day. And the number often influences our mood. So how often should we weigh? Every day, once a week, once a month? The answer depends on your goal--t

posted 6:00:28am Jan. 19, 2015 | read full post »

Do Professional Women Have a Place in the Church?
It was a usual Sunday and time for announcements. The Associate Pastor announced the women's meeting at 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday. The focus was on decorating the church for the holidays. The men were meeting Friday morning at 6:30 am. to discuss marketplace ministry. I looked at my husband and whispere

posted 6:00:30am Jan. 16, 2015 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.