TV and ADD: Is There a Connection?
A recent study of preschool aged children found that those who watched a lot of television had an increased chance of developing attention deficit problems (ADD) by the age of seven. Why you ask? Some researchers believe that TV might over stimulate and permanently "rewire" a developing brain.
The study involved questioning 1,345 children's parents on their children's TV viewing habits, with such questions as, "How many hours of television a day does your child watch?" and "Does your child show symptoms of ADD?" The symptoms of ADD are difficulty concentrating, being restless and/or impulsive, and becoming easily confused.
The results of the survey were surprising. About 37 percent of one year olds watched 1 - 2 hours of television a day and had a 40% better chance of developing ADD compared to one year olds who watched no TV. Among the three year olds who were tested, 44% watched 1 - 2 hours of TV each day, while only 7 percent watched none.
All this television watching can be a big problem considering that during a children's first two or three years, the newborn brain develops very rapidly; also because for every hour of television watched, young children face a 10 percent increased risk of developing ADD.
An anonymous 7th grader remarks, "I don't know if the studies are true; when I was little I used to watch a lot of TV, but then again I need to get tested for ADD."
The American Academy of Pediatrics may have a solution to these problems. They recommend that children under the age of two watch no television whatsoever. But there is much speculation to this suggestion. For example is TV "bad" because of unrealistically fast-paced visual images (over stimulation) or because of the...