Are kids actually uncovered to screens an excessive amount of? | EUROtoday

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EWhat if the youngsters of tomorrow had been prohibited from accessing screens? Tuesday night, throughout his lengthy press convention, Emmanuel Macron introduced that, sooner or later, “there may be bans [et] restrictions” on screens for youngsters and adolescents. According to the Head of State, “screens too often confine where they should liberate”.

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“We left a lot of families without instructions. […] We need to have a scientific consensus, that scientists begin to give us a plan and that we inform a public debate, which will come next. » In short, the executive wishes to determine what would be the best use of screens for children, whether “with family, at home or in class”.

Toddlers at excessive threat

In France, 28% of 12-17 12 months olds spend between 8 and 21 hours per week on a display screen, 25% between 22 and 35 hours and 30% greater than 35 hours, we study in a digital barometer from the Authority of regulation of digital communications, posts and press distribution (Arcep), printed in early 2023.

When it involves early childhood, that is hardly extra reassuring. In April 2023, Public Health France (SpF) printed a survey on the publicity of kids aged 2 to five and a half years to screens. According to their crew of researchers, a 2-year-old youngster spends a median of 56 minutes per day in entrance of any display screen. In addition, they add that for a kid aged 3 and a half, it’s 80 minutes per day and for a kid aged 5 and a half, the each day common is 1 hour 34 minutes.

However, display screen consumption will not be really useful for the youngest. Arcom, the regulatory authority for audiovisual and digital communication, advises to not expose kids below 3 years previous to tv. “To develop his abilities, the child must actively use his five senses, relying in particular on the relationship with an adult who responds to him. He needs to perceive himself as being able to transform the world, which he does, for example, when he manipulates objects around him. However, passive exposure to images broadcast on a screen does not promote this type of interaction: it […] can, on the contrary, slow down the development [cognitif et social] of the toddler,” explains Arcom in its information to the safety of youth and minors.

Children and screens: language and sleep problems, dangers of dependancy

“Children’s exposure to screens can also cause habituation problems, which can turn into addictive behaviors in adulthood,” he tells Point Stéphanie Ladel, addictologist and preventologist. “The screen is a vector for children, as for adults, of pleasant practices, which can turn into very bad habits,” provides the professional. It’s all a query of management and discovering the best length of publicity for these toddlers. Especially since a baby will not be accountable by definition, “he must be regulated by his human environment, his parents, his teachers, his nanny…” provides Stéphanie Ladel.

Emmanuel Macron thus requested the “best scientists, […] both epidemiologists, clinicians, sociologists, all disciplines, [de] tell us: before such an age, it is not reasonable to put a screen in front of a child.” Especially since extreme display screen consumption may cause language problems, sleep problems and will increase the danger of childhood weight problems. Among the explanations for his alternative of regulation, the president notably talked about the struggle in opposition to cyberharassment and his struggle in opposition to minors’ entry to pornography. He recalled that with the assistance of his earlier governments, a ban on telephones in school and higher parental controls had been put in place, amongst others.

Who would be the specialists chosen?

The scientific fee, requested by the president, ought to ship its conclusions on the finish of March. Emmanuel Macron particularly needs “the best experts to tell us if there are basic rules, before a certain age…” Stéphanie Ladel stays cautious a few potential announcement impact. “Who are the chosen experts? What will they bring out? And then, what actions by these scientists will eventually be taken up by the president? Mistrust. »

In his project to regulate screens for children and adolescents, the president notably recalled “the very important role of screens” and those of social networks during the urban riots that France experienced in June, following of the death of Nahel in Nanterre. Finally, during his speech, the president justified his desire to regulate digital access to young people as being of great “importance for the solidity of our democracies”. “If we’ve got adolescents and future residents whose relationship to the reality has been poorly constructed, […] on social networks the place the distinction between reality and untruth was not clear, hi there technology of conspiracy theorists. »