A recent Canadian study shows that parents of young children who report high stress levels were less likely to monitor how much time their children spend on mobile devices. The study is coming at a time when parents are facing high stress levels from dealing with the pandemic and its economic and mental health effects – and when kids have been at home for months.
The study surveyed 64 parents of children aged 18 months to five years. The parents were asked to score their stress levels and tell whether they monitored or limited their children’s screen use. The findings revealed that parents who were experiencing high levels of parental or general stress spent more time on their devices and, in turn, were less likely to monitor their kids’ screen time.
The findings from the study suggest that stress may drive parents to increase their screen time in front of their children, which also drives a greater demand for mobile devices in children.
The study authors hope that parents may understand how their actions influence the behavior of their children and how they may modify their own habits to improve outcomes in their children.