Nowadays you see glowing screens wherever you go. Whether it’s a phone, a GameBoy, or an IPad, technology has an undivided presence in our world. But, how does this wealth of technology affect those who are still developing?

According to new research “too much time spent on gaming, smartphones, and watching television is linked to heightened levels of diagnoses of anxiety or depression in children as young  as age 2…” (“Reduced screen time”, 2018).

Having consistent daily screen time is enough to make youth and adolescents lose their curiosity, self-control, and emotional stability. It also lessens their likelihood to finish tasks (“Reduced screen time”, 2018).

“Previous research on associations between screen time and psychological well-being among children and adolescents have been conflicting, leading some researchers to question the limits on screen time suggested by physician organizations,” stated Jean Twenge and Keith Campbell in their article “Associations between screen time and lower psychological well-being among children and adolescents: Evidence form a population-based study (“Reduced screen time”, 2018).

To analyze this, Twenge and Campbell used a random sample of over 40 thousand surveys from caregivers of those with children ages 2 to 17. This survey inquired about emotional, developmental, and behavioral issues, and also asked about how much screen time they had (“Reduced screen time”, 2018).

It was found that those who spent seven hours or more daily on screens were twice as likely as those who only spent an hour to be diagnosed with anxiety or depression – this finding was the most prevalent for adolescents (“Reduced screen time”, 2018).

Social media usage and adolescent health is also known for its negative associations, which make these results not very surprising when evaluating teens.

“In terms of prevention, establishing possible causes and outcomes of low psychological well-being is especially important for child and adolescent populations…half of mental health problems develop by adolescence…” stated Twenge and Campbell (“Reduced screen time”, 2018).


San Diego State University. (2018, October 29). Reduced screen time for young highly recommended for well-being. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 25, 2018 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/10/181029150931.htm