Parents of toddlers can breathe easy if the kid loves to watch the television and spend long hours on their own. It gives the mother that much needed time to attend to other chores and also rest her overworked body and brain. However, too much TV time is also not good for the child. There has to be a balance between TV time and other types of entertainment that your toddler loves to indulge in.
The general advice from top gynecologists and physicians is that you should keep your toddler away from television for the first two or three years at least. In today’s media-powered environment, this is hard to imagine and even harder to implement but there are mothers who have been able to do it successfully. It does require effort and commitment of a different level though.
Media companies are also aware that kids are one of their biggest audiences and they can reach their message to the mothers via kids. That’s why we are seeing so many shows targeted to very young children. It would take a herculean effort on the part of parents, especially the mother, to keep their toddlers insulated from television.
Some parents believe that it is no big deal to let their toddler watch an episode or two of a favorite cartoon. Yet, it must be borne in mind that the kids of today are growing up in a media-saturated world. At some point in time, they must be taught how to limit their TV time and cultivate some healthier enjoyment and entertainment habits.
If at all you want the toddler to watch TV, make sure they watch shows that are age-appropriate and the screen time is limited. TV shows that involve flashing screens and screechy sounds may affect the mental state of the child adversely.
Here are a few tips that you can use straight away to ensure that your toddler develops healthy TV watching habits:
Set Viewing Time Limits:
Doctors from all over the world recommend that kids from ages two to five should not spend more than an hour watching screens of any type including TV, mobile, computer, etc. Implement this rule in your home immediately and stringently. You can even try breaking viewing time into mini-slots of 15 to 30 minutes.
Keep TV Out Of Bedroom/Dining Place:
Make this an inflexible rule. The TV should not be in the bedroom. Also, mealtime should not be TV time as well. TV in the bedroom can easily lengthen view time for kids. Watching TV during meals can prevent the kids from enjoying their food and also put a stop to the all-important parents-kid communication.
Choose Programs Judiciously:
Researchers say that programs that are slow-paced programs create a feeling of relaxation in toddlers and give them time to think and absorb. It is better to choose programs that have some level of interactivity. Some shows can make your child sing, and dance and make sounds.
Consult the right doctor so that you can make the right decision in choosing the best TV programs and timings for your toddler.