Kids’ screen time: How much is too much?
As the Covid-19 induced lockdown forced most schools to take the online route to education, there is growing concern among parents about its effect on the eyesight of children, having prolonged exposure to screens.
Delhi resident Priyanka Singh believes regulating the screen time for her son helped minimise the impact. “I have restricted Arav’s screen time as it affects the eyesight, and continuous use of mobile will increase their dependence on it,” she says.
Addressing the concerns, Delhi-based paediatrician Dr PS Narang feels that it’s important to prioritise productivity over screen exposure. “Excess of everything is bad. A parent must understand the difference between exposure to screen for games and for online classes,” he notes.
Speaking from her parenting experience, citybased PR professional Ranjini Chalam endorses monitoring screen time beyond classes. She says, “Online classes are the only way to continue the learning process at this point.”
Indeed, for the well-being of children, Capital-based senior ophthalmologist Dr Prashaant Chaudhry recommends the 20-20-20 rule. “Every 20 minutes, take a 20-second break and focus on something at least 20 feet away,” he shares, while emphasising on the need to expose kids to natural light and offline activities.
However, Meenal Sehgal, a teacher and mother of kids who’re attending online classes, feels schools should rely more on hand-outs and worksheets. “Children below 12 years need to be exposed to as much natural environment as possible. Exposing them to computerised learning may instil indifference to environment,” she says.