Most people have heard the rule “No screens under the age of 2.” That was established back in 1999 by the American Academy of Pediatrics. Yet, many were not following that rule or weren’t considering certain items as screens. In October of 2016, the American Academy of Pediatrics revised its recommendations based on new research and societal norms. Their new focus is on helping families develop healthy media habits early on and the importance of the triangular interaction between child, family member, and screen. The following is a short break down of their recommendation by age.
Birth to 18 months- Avoid screens except for live video chats
18-24 months- No solo screen time and only use ‘high-quality programming/apps’
2 and up- Maximum of 1 hour of screen time a day which is limited to ‘high-quality
programming/apps,” that are co-viewed or co-played. Balance with physical activity, adequate sleep, media-free time as a family, and other healthy body and mind activities. Bedtime should be screen free for children.
Children and teens- Families are encouraged to develop a personalized media plan for
their children that can be shared with caregivers so they are followed consistently.
To learn more about the American Academy of Pediatrics recommendations on screen time, check out their website at https://www.healthychildren.org/English/family-life/Media/Pages/Where-We-Stand-TV-Viewing-Time.aspx.