A study in the February 2013 Pediatrics adds to the evidence that the more television
children watch in the evening, the less they sleep
A survey of more than 2,000 children and adolescents ages 5 to 24 in New Zealand collected data about how children spent their time in the evening, including eating, getting ready for bed
or doing homework
, watching television, playing video games
, listening to music
, and other activities. For all children in the sample, television watching dominated the presleep period, with screen time accounting for roughly 30 minutes of the 90-minute period. Those with a later sleep onset reported up to 13 more minutes of screen time in the presleep period than those with an earlier sleep onset.
Study authors conclude that reducing screen time may help promote earlier sleep onset in children and adolescents.