Doctors doubt safety of tablet computers for babies

25 Feb 2013, 17:02
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Modern tablet interfaces are built on the principle of intuitive interaction. The study has shown that a child still learning to walk and talk can easily handle a tablet, reports The Daily Express. Recently, the tablets have become common gifts for children. IT market offers specifically made tablets for children, as LeapPad or InnoTab 2.


Meanwhile, despite the apparent benefits such as educative applications and entertainment, doctors warn of the threats the tablets can pose. While technical innovations enter market in an instant, it takes at least five years to study the possible negative effects.


Amount of connections between brain cells increases six times in the period from birth to three years. During this period, a child should be engaged in certain physical and mental activities. But if a child spends a lot of time starring at the screen, natural development may be altered.


The recent research showed that every hour spent in front of a TV-set reduces the attention accuracy of a child by 9%. American pediatricians consistently recommend for children under two years old no TV time at all. The effects of tablets on childrens development have not been studied yet, but they seem to be rather similar to TV.


Dr. Amanda Gummer comments: “Technology is no substitute for parents sitting down with children to read and play games or for outdoor and creative play".


A psychologist Jenny Smith believes that five minutes session with the tablet is enough for 2-3-year-olds. Even with children aged 7 to 11, parents should restrict the time spend online. The gadgets should not be used in bed since it can lead to upset sleeping schedule.

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