Violent shows lead to sleep disorder in kids


7 Apr 2011
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WASHINGTON: Parents please take note: Allowing young children watch violent programmes, especially after 7pm, may interfere with their sleep, a new study has suggested.

The study by researchers from the Seattle Children's Research Institute in the US found that watching TV programmes during the day that depict violence was associated with increased sleep problems in children aged three to five years. It's also found that watching TV after 7pm was linked with increased sleep problems, regardless of whether the shows were violent or not.

The findings add to a growing body of research that children's media use can disrupt their sleep. It's concerning , because sleep troubles early in life may increase the risk of problems later on, including obesity and failure at school, the researchers said.

Most of the violent content the children watched was actually children programming, said study researcher Michelle Garrison. "It's just children's programming that's really more appropriate for 7 to 12 year-old children than it is for 3 to 5 year-olds ," Garrison said. For the study the researchers surveyed the parents of about 600 kids aged between three to five years.

Parents were asked how often their kids experienced sleep problems. They also kept a diary of their child's TV habits. It was found that more TV that kids watched in the evening, and the more violent content they watched, the more likely they were to have sleep problems.

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