Time Well Spent//

Screens Are Now Affecting Babies’ Sleep

Our technology addiction has gone too far.


Today’s kids are growing up in a world where screens are a fixture from the moment they’re born — something no previous generation has experienced. Now a new study published in Scientific Reports shows a serious consequence of growing up in the digital age: The use of touchscreen devices is linked to sleep loss in infants as young as 6 months old.

Image courtesy of Pixabay

Every hour infants and toddlers aged 6 to 36 months spent using touchscreen devices was associated with 15.6 minutes less total sleep. That number may seem small but considering that at these ages, “sleep is essential for cognitive development,” the study authors write, any amount of lost sleep is a big deal. There was also a significant association between tablet use and taking longer to fall asleep at night. (Data was collected from 715 UK infants and toddlers by researchers from the Centre for Brain and Cognitive Development at the University of London.)

Given what we know about how screens mess with our sleep as adults, these findings are, unfortunately, not very surprising. But they can serve as a wake up call. When babies are losing sleep due to screens, it’s truly time to reevaluate our relationship with technology and prioritize unplugging at every age.

Read the full study here.

Originally published at journal.thriveglobal.com

The Thrive Global Community welcomes voices from many spheres. We publish pieces written by outside contributors with a wide range of opinions, which don’t necessarily reflect our own. Learn more or join us as a community member!
Share your comments below. Please read our commenting guidelines before posting. If you have a concern about a comment, report it here.

You might also like...

Well-Being//

Your Family’s Sleep Has to Be a Priority

by Rebecca Kempton, MD
Community//

Screen Time Guidelines for Kids of All Ages

by Lauren B. Stevens
Community//

What Poor Sleep Could be Doing to Your Child or Teen

by Richa Bhatia, MD

Sign up for the Thrive Global newsletter

Will be used in accordance with our privacy policy.

Thrive Global
People look for retreats for themselves, in the country, by the coast, or in the hills . . . There is nowhere that a person can find a more peaceful and trouble-free retreat than in his own mind. . . . So constantly give yourself this retreat, and renew yourself.

- MARCUS AURELIUS

We use cookies on our site to give you the best experience possible. By continuing to browse the site, you agree to this use. For more information on how we use cookies, see our Privacy Policy.