Arrested Development

With Chicago's mayor and chief of police on the take, Al Capone thought he was above the law. It wasn't until after the St. Valentine's Day Massacre that Capone fell out of favor with his influential friends and became "Public Enemy No. 1." He was finally nabbed on tax evasion charges and sentenced to 11 years in jail. That arrested development of his criminal enterprises, and Chicago was a different town when the syphilis-riddled con was released in 1939.

On the other hand, arrested development is a crime when it comes to your kid's brain! A new study from the University of Calgary found that a child's rapidly developing brain and thirst to learn new things come to a halt when he or she is stuck in front of a digital screen, performing repetitive tasks day after day.

Researchers tracked one set of 36-month-olds who logged 25 hours per week of screen time, and another set of 36-month-olds who watched for 11 hours weekly. (In the U.S., on average, children watch more than 16 hours a week.) They then examined developmental test results in the same children at 60 months and found that those with increased screen times showed poorer performances on developmental testing. The same held true for 24-month-olds tested again at 36 months.

Mom, Dad, it's not enough to cut down (near zero) on a kids' screen time. Replace it with learning opportunities, like reading a book or going on an adventure. It means a lot to a child's growth to spend face-to-face time with you!

© 2019 Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D.
Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.

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