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Computer screens bad for kids' brains

Are you glued to the computer for more than an hour? A psychologist has warned that computer screens are bad for the brains of young children.

india Updated: Aug 02, 2010 13:19 IST

A psychologist has warned that computer screens are bad for the brains of young children.

Dr Aric Sigman, an American-born British psychologist warns against computer usage, especially by any children under 9.

"Children are adults [legally] at 18 but their brains are not adult till they''re 24 and a half," The New Zealand Herald quoted Sigman as saying.

"Because of that, things that we know may have a negative impact should be limited till the brain has set in stone,” he added.

According to Sigman’s study, children aged 10 to 15 who were given computers, showed reductions in maths and reading abilities.

He added that face-to-face communication for kids is a lot more vital in brain development than technology is.

"How do children learn how to speak, how to enter a conversation, how to pronounce words?" he asked.

"It is all linked to face-to-face contact because they need to see the facial muscles moving in their parents'' faces.”

"If you put a fridge in a child's bedroom they will eat more. If you put a screen in their bedroom they are going to watch more," said Sigman.

His rules about TV and computers are that children older than three should get a maximum of an hour’s TV watching, teenagers should get 90 minutes a day, and under-15s should have no TV in bedrooms.