New research says screen time does not negatively affect children’s intelligence

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Published: Aug. 4, 2022 at 7:51 AM CDT
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Lake Charles, LA (KPLC) - A new study is showing that some screen activities may not be as bad for your child’s brain as you may think.

From watching TV, scrolling through social media, to playing video games, screens are everywhere. And according to the American Heart Association, kids under 18 are on those screens for more than seven hours a day.

Previous research has said that too much screen time could be harmful to a child’s development, but a new study out of Sweeden says that it really depends on the type of activity. In fact, some might actually be beneficial for your child’s IQ.

“This happens with every new cognitive adjacent technology is that we look at it and say, this is going to somehow disrupt our cognitive abilities, our smarts,” explains Dr. Anthony Chemero, Cognitive Science Researcher for the University of Cincinnati.

Researchers in Sweeden conducted a study where they followed 5,000 kids for up to two years. They found those who played video games for more than one hour increased their IQ by about two and a half points.

They also found no major negative or positive effects from watching TV or using social media. Though, that isn’t to say that there are no negative effects at all.

But when it comes to how these activities affect people’s intelligence Dr. Chemero says, “The arguments that they are making us dumber don’t hold up.”

The researchers say they only studied the effects of screens on kids’ intelligence and not the effects they might have on physical activity, sleep, well-being, or school performance.

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