The following is excerpted from an online article posted by StudyFinds.
Screen time has a long-lasting impact on the structure and functionality of young people’s brains, a new study suggests. Scientists report that activities such as watching television, playing video games, or using a tablet can have both beneficial and detrimental consequences.
According to a comprehensive review spanning 23 years and 33 neuroimaging studies, screen time causes alterations in the pre-frontal cortex — the part of the brain responsible for functions such as working memory and adaptive response in various situations.
The research highlights that children under 12 who use tablet devices tend to exhibit poorer brain function and diminished problem-solving capabilities. Additionally, video gaming and heavy internet use displayed a link to adverse changes in brain regions affecting intelligence quotients and brain volume in four separate studies.
However, the study also suggests that playing video games might increase cognitive demands, thereby possibly enhancing children’s executive functions and cognitive abilities.
“It should be recognized by both educators and caregivers that children’s cognitive development may be influenced by their digital experiences,” states Hui Li, Chair Professor at The Education University of Hong Kong, in a media release. “Limiting their screen time is an effective but confronting way, and more innovative, friendly, and practical strategies could be developed and implemented.”
The study was published in the Early Education and Development Journal.