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Screen time of infants in Sydney, Australia: a birth cohort study

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posted on 28.03.2022, 05:10 authored by M Chandra, B Jalaludin, S Woolfenden, J Descallar, L Nicholls, Cheryl DissanayakeCheryl Dissanayake, K Williams, E Murphy, A Walter, J Eastwood, V Eapen
Objectives: To determine the amount of daily screen time in children 18 months of age and ascertain correlations that may be contributing to excessive screen use. Design: A birth cohort was followed with telephone interviews at 6, 12 and 18 months of age. Information about screen time was collected at 18 months. Setting: Parents were recruited from postnatal wards of 2 major public hospitals and at home visits conducted for new mothers within 4 weeks of birth in South Western Sydney (SWS). Participants: Parents of 500 children with infants 18 months of age residing in SWS. Primary and secondary outcomes: Screen time in infants 18 months of age and associated correlations. Results: A large percentage of children 18 months of age (40%) had screen times >2 hours daily. There were significant associations between more than 2 hours of screen time daily and mothers without a partner (OR 4.32 (95% CI 1.67 to 11.15)); having <3 siblings (no siblings: OR 2.44 (95% CI 1.20 to 4.94); 12 siblings: OR 2.08 (95% CI 1.06 to 4.08)); an employed father (OR 1.96 (95% CI 1.09 to 3.52)); no outdoor equipment at home (OR 1.89 (95% CI 1.08 to 3.34)) and fewer than 5 outings per week (OR 2.08 (95% CI 1.37 to 3.17)). Conclusions: There is emerging evidence that excess screen time in children causes adverse cognitive, developmental and health outcomes. This study has shown that a large proportion of very young children residing in SWS have screen exposures for >2 hours per day. Factors contributing to excess screen time have also been identified in this study; however, a greater understanding of risk factors needs to be ascertained in order to facilitate greater public health efforts to reduce screen exposure.

Funding

This study (APP 1013690) was funded by the NH&MRC in Australia, through a partnership grant with the New South Wales Department of Health, Kids and Families and in-kind support from University of New South Wales, La Trobe University, South Western Sydney Local Health District and Sydney Children's Hospital Network.

History

Publication Date

01/01/2016

Journal

BMJ Open

Volume

6

Issue

10

Article Number

e012342

Pagination

7p.

Publisher

BMJ Publishing Group

ISSN

2044-6055

Rights Statement

This is an Open Access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/