TV damages attention span

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Children Matter have highlighted a study on how watching television more than two hours a day early in life can lead to attention problems later in adolescence. There was a roughly 40 percent increase in attention problems among heavy TV viewers was observed in both boys and girls, and was independent of whether a diagnosis of attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder was made prior to adolescence.

The link was established by a long-term study of the habits and behaviors of more than 1,000 children born in Dunedin, New Zealand, between April 1972 and March 1973. The children aged 5 to 11 watched an average of 2.05 hours of weekday television. From age 13 to 15, time spent in front of the tube rose to an average of 3.1 hours a day. "Those who watched more than two hours, and particularly those who watched more than three hours, of television per day during childhood had above-average symptoms of attention problems in adolescence," Carl Landhuis of the University of Otago in Dunedin wrote in his report, published in the journal Pediatrics. Look here for more information.


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