Ha! What bollocks.
I haven't had a spare second, nor, to be honest, the inclination to give a shit about 'sound evidence' in the five months now since Fletch was born. It's been a whirlwind of feeding, sleeping, crying, laughing, nappies, playing and just getting through the bloody day.
But there is one, let's call it, 'accidental parenting strategy', that I've realised I am guilty of. Plonking Fletch in front of the old TV has become a little go-to resource for me when I need a time out. Or if I need the toilet. Or a glass of water. Or if Fletch just needs to calm the fuck down. As annoying as Mister Maker is, he has now become my ally. And he, the Teletubbies and Charlie & Lola never fail to come through with the goods.
Problem is, I'm not sure how much is too much. I've done some in-depth research (*cough* Google) and apparently there is some evidence out there that says too much TV before 6 months lowers language and visual motor skills at age 3. But, when the results were adjusted for household income and education levels, the effect disappeared. So, it sounds like no one really knows the effect of TV on young babies.
I can't believe that 5 or 10 or let's go wild, 15 minutes here and there is going to matter. I certainly know my brother and sister and I watched a fair bit of TV growing up and look how we turned out! OK, maybe not such a good example. But surely it's not that big a deal, right? What I do know is that Fletch's TV watching doesn't replace anything. He plays with his toys, goos and gahs out the windows at the boats and the cars, is out walking with me, swimming in the pool, at our weekly baby class, or playing with his baby friends the rest of the time. We read books, we sing, we play, we tickle, we laugh. The TV's certainly not a big part of his life, but it's there. And I can't see it going away anytime soon.
So in the spirit of continuing my robust research, I'm interested to know what you think on the matter!
Do you let your kids watch TV?
Do you limit the time per day?
Do you think it's detrimental to their development?
Or are you all for it?