TOTS who spend hours in front of screens may be slower at learning to problem-solve and communicate, a study warns.
Scientists said the more yearlings watching, the greater the effect.
They said those who spent more than four hours a day in front of a TV or tablet during the first year of life experienced developmental delays.
From the age of four, however, their social and personal skills as well as their problem-solving skills corresponded to those of their peers.
Researchers were torn between two likely theories.
One of them was that the toddlers just caught up.
The other reason was that toddlers who already had social and personal development problems were more likely to be put in front of a screen.
Experts found that some children’s language skills improved when their screens were used for educational purposes.
The study, involving 7,097 children, was conducted by Tohoku University in Japan.
Parents filled out questionnaires to monitor their child’s development.
Study author Dr. Taku Obara concluded, “Increased screen time at age one was associated with developmental delays in communication and problem solving at ages two and four.”