Experts worry that too much time on tablets may hinder child development

The ease-of-use that tablets have means that even young children can navigate and control them. Because of this, many parents who don’t have the time to keep their children constantly entertained simply give them a tablet so that they can entertain themselves. While many parents try and provide their kids with educational apps and games, experts say that there is no real evidence that children actually benefit from using those apps. In fact, most studies show that too much time on tablets can hinder a child’s development and could potentially lead to behavior problems.

Tablet computers are so easy to use that even a 3-year-old can master them. And that has some pediatricians and other health experts worried. Since navigating a tablet generally doesn’t require the ability to type or read, children as young as toddlers can quickly learn how to stream movies, scroll through family photos or play simple games. That ease-of-use makes tablets -and smartphones- popular with busy parents who use them to pacify their kids during car rides, restaurant outings or while they’re at home trying to get dinner on the table. And many feel a little less guilty about it if they think there’s educational value to the apps and games their children use.

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