An intruder in the bedroom

There is an effective way for us to contribute to our children’s good health: simply banish television from their bedroom!

There is an effective way for us to contribute to our children’s good health: simply banish television from their bedroom!

According to some surveys, half of all young Americans have a television in their bedroom. Yet, previous investigations have demonstrated a strong association between the presence of television in the space where we rest, and a variety of health and educational problems. One of the main consequences of having a television in the bedroom is that a child can watch it for longer periods of time, without the parents even noticing. In addition, children who have a television in their bedroom have lower scores in school tests, devote less time to reading, have a greater risk of smoking, and of suffering from obesity and sleep problems.

In another study, researchers followed a group of children who were already considered to be overweight, for a period of two years. Half of them were given a monitoring device that served in reducing their access to television via an access code, and the other half received nothing. After two years, the children who had seen their television time restrained had put on less weight than the other kids. Furthermore, let us not forget that television incessantly bombards us with commercials that advertise snacks and fast-food restaurants. In addition, another study demonstrated that each hour spent in front of the television increases the calorie intake of 12-year-olds by 167 calories per hour!

We should avoid having televisions in our bedrooms, and this applies to children and parents alike. Doing so will, among other things, help us sleep better. It also allows us to keep a closer eye on the programs our children are watching, so we can discuss it with them when the need arises. It also makes it easier for parents to evaluate just how much time their children spend in front of the small screen…or devote to their homework!

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