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Delaying Our Toddlers:The Dangers of Second Hand Television

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By Rachel Derry
Staff Writer LIFamilies

Parents already know to try to keep their children away from second hand smoke, but now researchers warn parents to keep children away from second hand television. Second hand television sounds absurd, right, but 1 in 3 American households leave their television on during the day, creating background noise, and possibly undermining their toddler’s development.

Parents have already been told to discourage screen time for children under the age of 2. It can cause verbal development to lag and possibly cause communication skills to remain underdeveloped. Television keeps children and parents from interacting, and without their parents speaking to them children will less effectively learn how to speak and communicate. Children need face to face communication to develop those skills. They need to know and see how the listener is going to react to what they are saying.

Now the American Academy of Pediatrics includes warnings about children being allowed to play around a television at all. Even with the television just being on for sound, if distracts children away from their free play. With the television on, toddlers play for shorter amounts of time and their focus tends to stray away from their play. When a toddler is playing, they are developing their motor and cognitive skills.

To communicate with your child and to allow them to develop properly, the majority of the time the television should be off and your interactions should be face to face. In our modern world of technology it’s hard to believe that to move forward you need to step back, but our babies are still learning one foot at a time.

Long Island Family Life & Parenting Articles > Delaying Our Toddlers:The Dangers of Second Hand Television

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