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Toddlers addicted to tablets: Parents concern about their child’s development grows

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iPad Kid

“We can go weeks and that’s all she wants,” said Michelle Samuels-Cohen.

Michelle Samuels-Cohen wants her 2-year-old daughter Emily to have everything.  If Emily wants to play on the Ipad she’ll give it to her, but the more Emily wants it, the more her mother worries, is the smart device smart for her 2 year-old daughter?
“When their grandparents come to visit they could happily just go take the iPad and sit in the corner and play by themselves and not interact with people,” said Michelle Samuels-Cohen.

According to a recent survey, one in ten children under four are using a tablet, not just an iPad. Since they haven’t been around for long, the effects, doctors say are just not known.

“We definitely see toddlers several hours a day with touch screen navigation. We know that that’s not a good thing, most of their time should be spent physically engaging in three dimensional world,” said Dr. Caroline Martinez of Mount Sinai Medical Center.

Pediatrician Dr. Carolyn Martineze has special training in development and behavior of children.

Samuels-Cohen said she’s seeing something else. Her daughter is a whiz when it comes to matching games, figuring out patterns, and identifying words and animals. Earlier development in some ways than her four-year-old daughter who didn’t use the iPad at Emily’s age.

Limitations, Doctors say, are key here.

A pediatrician with The American Academy of Pediatrics said while parents can’t eliminate screen time, they still need to limit it. The strict recommendation is no time, but a little time is okay. Over 2, parents need to be judicious, 2 hours or less. They need unplugged time to learn speech and motor skills, and there is a concern that if kids are on their iPads or tablets too much, they won’t develop social skills, motor skills or even speech skills.

1 Comment

  • Dr.S

    As a child psychiatrist, I am both concerned about the pitfalls and want technology to serve kids better. Media management is an important parenting task today. Kids would benefit from smart parents who are empowered by tech tools that make this task easier. Zillydillyy for iPad is a great start.

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