Monday, March 9, 2009
TV Does Not Improve IQ in Toddlers
A new study in Pediatrics shows that children under the age of two who watch TV do not have a boost in their IQ. There had been claims that certain shows helped children's brain development and cognitive skills but this study of 872 toddlers showed TV viewing had no effect one way or another.
Researchers evaluated the children's language and visual motor skills using the Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test III, which is associated with IQ. Preliminary results showed the kids who watched more TV had poorer scores on these tests but those effects did not hold up when they controlled for other factors such as mother's age, education, household income and marital status.
Other studies have shown that watching TV does more harm than good for babies.
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends no television viewing for children under age 2. The Harvard researchers found that most babies born in the U.S. watch between one to two hours of TV a day. (Perhaps they were watching Oprah with their moms. I hope it wasn't Jerry Springer).
Posted by Toni Brayer, MD at 8:48 PM