Limiting Screentime Improves Physical Activity/ Sleep in Children
In a cluster randomized clinical trial in JAMA Pediatrics designed to limit recreational screen use resulted in an increase in children's non sedentary time.
the study included a total of 89 families (181 children and 164 adults) were recruited based on a population-based survey on screen media habits in families with children. The responding parent had to list self-reported recreational screen use . In addition, the parent had to be full-time employed or enrolled in full-time education.
Families were randomly assigned to the screen media reduction intervention. Families randomly assigned to the control group were instructed to carry on as usual.
Among the 89 randomized families the intervention group had 45 families and control group 44 families. Eighty-three children (97%) in the intervention group were compliant to the screen use reduction during the intervention. The mean change in leisure non-sedentary activity in the intervention group was 44.8 minutes per day and in the control group was 1.0 minute per day. No significant between-group mean differences were observed between intervention and control for the electroencephalography-based sleep outcomes.
Therefore it was observed that a recreational screen media reduction intervention resulted in a substantial increase in children's engagement in physical activity. The large effect suggested that the high levels of recreational screen media use seen in many children should be a public health concern.
Dr. Nandita Mohan
BDS, MDS( Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry)