Media use is rising as more homes own tablets, personal computers, cell phones, along with increasing internet and social media access. The American Academy of Pediatrics is concerned about the possible negative impact of media (including television) messages and images that our children and adolescents are experiencing as well as recognizing the potential positive impact of media on our youth. AAP encourages pediatricians to ask two questions at well-child check-ups:
- How much screen time does your child encounter each day?
- Does your child have a television or Wi-Fi capable device/access in their bedroom?
AAP issued a policy statement in October 2013 urging parents, pediatricians, schools, policymakers, advertisers and others in the entertainment industry to acknowledge the role media plays with our youth and take action to safeguard and limit children’s exposure to negative and harmful effects of media use. The AAP policy statement Children, Adolescents, and the Media stems from extensive research with recommendations to inform adults, both professionals and parents, who have access to influencing children’s media use. My next blog entry will provide caregivers with instructions on how to develop a family media plan, as suggested by AAP, to help equip families and children make safe and healthy media choices. Has your family created a family media plan? If so, please share your tips, suggestions and resources. We would appreciate hearing from you!