Boy watching the TV at night.

The Media and Sleep

blog

Boy watching the TV at night.The report from the Kaiser Family Foundation featured in the last post also discusses active versus passive television viewing. Here is what they said in this report:

Most of the research attention so far has been devoted to “active” or “foreground” or “primary” media use, in which the child or adolescent is actively watching the screen as a primary activity. Yet recent advances have suggested that for many of the developmental effects of television viewing, background viewing, in which the television is on but is not being watched as the child’s primary activity—is equally important and may indeed have more deleterious effects than primary viewing.

One study tested the association of passive TV exposure with children’s sleep, and found not only that passive viewing had a significant effect, but that the association of passive viewing with a summary sleep problem score was in fact stronger than that for active viewing. This result may have arisen because the passive viewing to which the children were exposed was more stressful than the content that they were watching actively, which was presumably children’s fare.

It’s important not to have the television running in the background, in addition to limiting television viewing time for our kids.

Hebrews 4:10 “For anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from his own work, just as God did from his.” (NIV)

Author

Gary L. Hopkins, MD, DrPH, MPH is currently an associate research professor at Andrews University in Berrien Springs, Michigan where he is also associate director of the Institute for Prevention of Addictions, Director of the Center for Prevention Research and Director of the Center for Media Impact Research.