8 Side Effects of Watching TV On Your Toddler

Remember the era where we had to wait for a whole week to watch our favorite cartoon or a full-lengt...

Remember the era where we had to wait for a whole week to watch our favorite cartoon or a full-length? There would be a specific time in the week when the programme would be aired and once we were done watching, we would eagerly wait for the next episode to be telecast at the same time, same day the following week. How times have changed! Today we are spoilt for choice, adults and children alike. Programmes run all day long with repeat episodes. Kids channels are abundant with cartoon shows and all a caregiver has to do to deal with a naughty toddler is to turn on a cartoon channel and get the kid glued to the television screen. But do we understand the impact of TV watching on the little ones? Let us take a look at some of the prominent side-effects of watching TV on our toddlers before you grab the TV remote to pacify the child.


1. Thwarts Creative Bent Of Mind


Toddlers are at a rapid developmental stage and their minds are exploring different things that they are exposed to. Television opens up new avenues for their minds, but with frequent and prolonged TV watching, toddlers may get so used to it, and their minds will not make use of the cognitive skills to explore new things.

2. Cages Toddlers Into A Virtual Shell


If kids get addicted to the television at such an early stage in life, it impedes their social interaction with children of their own age. They stand the chance of becoming a recluse and not enjoy the social company. This may lead to a dysfunctional social development and have an impact on their personality as they grow up.

3. May Hamper Your Child's Verbal Intelligence


Research shows that addictive TV watching at a young age may affect your little one's brain structure. There will be an accumulation of grey matter around the front polar cortex that is located near the brain's frontal lobe. This area is responsible for verbal intelligence. TV watching may impede your toddler's verbal intelligence.

4. Will Take Away Quality Parent-Child Bonding


For healthy and psychological development, a toddler needs to feel loved and cared for by the parents. Parental bonding with children ensures a secure feeling inside the little ones. This secure attachment helps them to explore new things around them without feeling scared or shying away from new experiences. Frequent TV watching can be detrimental for this kind of bonding and may affect your child's sense of security and well-being at a later stage in life.

5. Creates An Aversion Towards Reading


When a toddler is used to watching TV, he or she does not feel inclined to explore the world of books. Reading books is a wonderful way to initiate imaginative thinking. Browsing through colourful photos on the pages of the books helps the child to connect images to words. This sharpens the mind and enables higher brain development. However, with frequent TV viewing children lose this inclination towards books that adversely impacts motor as well as cognitive skills.

6. Adverse Effect On Listening


The constant sound from the television can affect normal listening and interfere with your toddler's auditory senses. Children during this stage of development learn the ability to speak by listening to sounds and languages from people around them through interactions. But the constant background noise from the TV can greatly affect this listening leading to speech difficulties.

7. Weight-Related Problems


Obesity is not the only problem that is related to excessive TV watching. It is true that when a toddler is sitting most of the time watching TV he or she misses out on the physical activities that are part of growing up leading to unhealthy weight gain which may eventually lead to obesity. TV watching may also lead to undernourishment because a toddler addicted to TV will fix its focus on the screen while eating and not be interested in eating. The child will miss out on essential nutrition that is necessary for toddlers.

8. Affects The Eyesight


Children who sit in front of the TV for prolonged duration stand the risk of impairing their eyesight. The radiation from the TV is harmful, especially in proximity or for extensive periods of time. Also, when a toddler looks at the screen for long, the fluids that help in the movement of the eyeballs dries up and it may cause irritation and severe discomfort.

Nowadays children's TV programs are not limited to age-appropriate content. Even cartoons have violence and negativity that may affect the emotional development of your toddler. It is okay to let your child enjoy some programmes on television, but getting the kid hooked to it so that you can go about your work in peace may be detrimental for the physiological as well as emotional development of your little one. Go play with your tiny tots and read and enjoy with them, instead of getting glued in front of the television.
Happy parenting!

Image Source: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9

Contributed By: Kriti Mazumdar

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Post a Comment

  1. Not just toddlers, even I am addicted to laptop and television. Feel guilty but now so used to :(

    ReplyDelete
  2. TVs are more important than playgrounds now :P

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Very true Salomi...I remember an age when we used to wait to run tot he fields to play...and now is a time when kids wait to run back to sit in front of the tv screen or laptops.

      Delete

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