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How screen time can affect your kid's sleep

advice

The survey of 1,600 parents also found 92% are worried about their children’s screen time before bed. Of these, 74% are concerned it affects their child's sleep.

And they're right to be worried ...

How do tablets and smartphones disrupt sleep?

Tablets, smartphones and other electronic devices with self-luminous electronic displays have been shown to suppress melatonin at night.

This is an important sleep hormone that controls sleep and wake cycles (your circadian rhythms) and induces sleep.

Researchers found that children and teenagers who use mobile phones and tablets at bedtime are more than twice as likely to be getting too little sleep as those who don't.

Brandon Ackroyd from TigerMobiles.com, who commissioned the survey of parents with kids aged six to 14-years-old, said, ‘Our research reveals that the vast majority of parents are worried about their children using devices just before bed.

‘Because children have easy access to tablets and smartphones it's far harder to police their use. Several scientific studies show that blue light emitted from the devices can cause sleep deprivation.

'We're seeing more and more schools use tablets as a replacement for textbooks too so the problem of poor sleep amongst children is likely to get worse.’

What are the effects of lack of sleep?

Lack of sleep in adults and children can have far reaching health consequences.

The suppression of melatonin and poor sleep can lead to an increased risk of cancer. It can also impair the immune system and may lead to other conditions such as type 2 diabetes, obesity and heart disease.

The survey also found 59% of parents surveyed think their kids spend too much time in front of screens. Meanwhile, 89% wanted advice on how they can better manage their kids’ screen time.

Here are our top tips on helping your kids get a better night's sleep.

Tips to help your kids sleep

Regular bedtimes

Having predictable and positive bedtime routines are crucial in helping your little one sleep.

Gadget-free zones

Keep gadgets out of the bedroom and also don't use in the hour before bed.

Low level nightlights

If your child doesn't like the dark, use low-illumination night lights to help them nod off.

Limit TV time

Monitor your child's TV use before bedtime, and try to avoid an hour before bedtime. It's advised that children under two don't watch TV at all.

17th November 2016, 15:16
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Page updated 17th Nov 2016, 15:16
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