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Technology a Fundamental Change in Child Development

According to a recent survey conducted by Common Sense Media, more than a third of children under the age of 2 have used a smartphone and tablet, and three quarters of children ages 8 and under live in a home with at least one mobile device. The survey also found that children use mobile devices for an average of an hour and seven minutes a day. Given the increasing prevalence of digital technology among children, there is concern about the long-term effects that this screen time is having on child development.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends no screen time from any sort of media device for children ages 2 or less and that older children should have less than 1 to 2 hours a day. Furthermore, the Academy recommends that pediatricians ask parents about their children’s use of media technology during doctor visits.

In a recent SFGate article about the impact of technology on child development, Dr. Julie O’Brien, MD, a pediatrician at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital, discusses the importance of avoiding screen time in children ages 2 and under since that is the time when patterns and connections in the brain are being set. To read more about technology’s impact in child development, click here.

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