Is Increased Screen Time Associated With Delayed Child Development?

JAMA Pediatrics


Media advisory: To contact corresponding author Sheri Madigan, Ph.D., email Heath McCoy at The full study is linked to this news release.

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Bottom Line: Many children spend more time on screens than is recommended. This study looked at whether more screen time was associated with lower scores in a measure of developmental milestones in children and it also looked at the opposite association of whether children with delays in development received more screen time to control challenging behavior. The study included about 2,400 typically developing children in Canada and found higher levels of screen time at ages 2 and 3 were associated with poorer performance on the developmental screening measure at ages 3 and 5. The opposite association wasn’t observed. A limitation of this observational study is that screen time behaviors in children may have changed since final data were collected in 2016. The authors recommend managing children’s screen time.

Author: Sheri Madigan, Ph.D., University of Calgary, Alberta, Canada and coauthors



Editor’s Note: The article includes conflict of interest and funding/support disclosures. Please see the article for additional information, including other authors, author contributions and affiliations, financial disclosures, funding and support, etc.

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