As part of our special issue “Communication Technology, Media Use and the Health of our Kids”, we published a new study looking at the associations between screen-based behaviour and health complaints in adolescents.
The study uses data from HBSC study and focuses on Slovak adolescents. More than 8,000 adolescents were included, aged between 11 and 15 years. Various screen-based behaviours were assessed (such as watching TV and playing computer games), as well as a number of health complaints (such as headache, backache, sleep difficulties, irritability etc).
The authors report that time spent in front of the computer increased the chance of reporting all the assessed health complaints. Watching TV for more than 3 hours per day increased reporting of headaches, feeling low, being irritable and feeling nervous. These associations were not moderated by physical activity.
What do you think? How can we reduce the effects of screen-related behaviours on health? Is it possible to “move” children away from the screens? And how?