CHICAGO – Watching television more than two hours a day early in life can lead to attention problems later in adolescence, according to a study released on Tuesday.
The roughly 40 percent increase in attention problems among heavy TV viewers was observed in both boys and girls, and was independent of whether a diagnosis of attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder was made prior to adolescence.
What struck me about this was that it immediately shook a core tenet of my personal beliefs, in that perhaps the reason that so many kids are diagnosed with ADD/ADHD is not that psychiatrists (or is that psychologists? I can never keep that straight) can make money off of the drugs that the end up prescribing the kids, but maybe, just maybe, the kids develop these disorders more now because we parents end up using the television as the babysitter altogether too much.
Another reason to toss the television, I’m afraid. Nature. I’m really becoming a fan of nature. Can we make going outside a spectator sport?