business news in context, analysis with attitude

by Kevin Coupe

The Wall Street Journal reports this morning that the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) is officially recommending that parents should ban the use of electronic media during mealtimes and after bedtime, suggesting that "excessive media use is associated with obesity, poor school performance, aggression and lack of sleep."

The story says that "children ages 8 to 18 spent an average of 7 hours and 38 minutes a day consuming media for fun, including TV, music, videogames and other content in 2009, according to a 2010 report from the Kaiser Family Foundation." The AAP's existing recommendations are that "kids should limit the amount of screen time for entertainment to less than two hours per day; children younger than 2 shouldn't have any TV or Internet exposure. Also, televisions and Internet-accessible devices should be kept out of kids' bedrooms."

The Journal writes that "families should have a no-device rule during meals and after bedtime, the guidelines say. Parents should also set family rules covering the use of the Internet and social media and cellphones and texting, including, perhaps, which sites can be visited, who can be called and giving parental access to Facebook accounts."

And here's the real Eye-Opening statement from the story:

Doctors say parents need to abide by the family rules, too, to model healthy behavior.

Uh-oh. For a lot of us adults, setting a positive example may be more difficult than setting a few rules.
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