Preschool-aged children who watch too much television may be at increased risk of developing externalizing problems such as aggression or inattention, new research suggests.Have to find a better way to "program" children so they become cookie cutter compliant.
A population-based study of almost 4000 children in the Netherlands showed that high levels of television viewing over time were significantly linked to both the incidence of externalizing problems and the persistence of preexisting problems.
"In this study, a reasonably small group of some 300 children already had some behavioral problems (a bit oppositional, aggressive, inattentive) when they were 2 years old. We could show that these problems worsen if they watch more than 1 hour of TV a day," coinvestigator Henning Tiemeier, MD, PhD, from the Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at Erasmus University Medical Center in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, told Medscape Medical News.
"Thus, not only do problems arise but if your child is problematic, TV watching may make matters worse," said Dr. Tiemeier.
He noted that this is an important topic to which all clinicians, including those in the United States, should give attention.
"Clinicians should address the problem that many children are 'nursed' by a TV and that a TV keeps irritable or oppositional children quiet. But it does not replace a parent or nanny," said Dr. Tiemeier.
Welcome to the Brave New World.