Latest News

Back to Latest News back

 

Parents concerned over children’s excessive screen time

Parents concerned over children’s excessive screen time
December 28, 2015

Worried parents have nominated excessive screen time, obesity, and a lack of physical activity as their three biggest health concerns for Australian children and teenagers.

The Australian Child Health Poll, conducted by Melbourne's Royal Children's Hospital, found having an unhealthy diet was also considered by parents as in the top four children's health issues - higher than bullying, drug use, asthma and cancer.

The poll's director, Dr Anthea Rhodes, said the top 10 concerns related to modern lifestyles, rather than traditional issues like allergies and accidents.

Dr Rhodes stated “when we've looked to the public and asked them to tell us what's important, they've very clearly told us, it's those issues relating to lifestyle, child welfare and also mental health that are the big problems in their eyes.

"There's lots of research that tells us about the flow-on effects of obesity in children and the economic effects of that when it persists into adulthood."

Excessive screen time was picked out by 60% of 2,000 respondents, as the number one health issue of concern.

The poll also found that parents were six times more likely to be concerned about obesity in children other than their own.

The survey asked people to rate 29 childhood health issues, including allergies, cancer and asthma.

Dr Rhodes said it was the first time people had been asked about their biggest health concerns for children.

While the excessive use of electronic devices was expected to feature highly, Dr Rhodes said it was surprising to see lifestyle issues top the list.

58% nominated excessive screen time as their biggest health concern for children, ahead of 55% who identified obesity and 54% who identified a lack of physical activity.

Dr Rhodes added “screen time has been linked to a number of health problems in children.

"Research has shown that it is linked to sedentary behaviours which can lead to obesity. There is a lot of interplay with the modern lifestyle of children in our results."

The results of the poll are in contrast to a 2012 report into child health from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, which found asthma was the most common chronic condition among children and cancer the leading cause of death.

Dr Rhodes said respondents were asked to rank ‘traditional’ health concerns but they didn't feature as highly in the results.

However, while a majority of people identified childhood obesity as a big health problem just 8% of parents thought it was an issue for their own kids.

The poll results come amid growing concerns about the health risk of excessive screen time for children.

Earlier this year, a study of 9000 secondary school students by the Cancer Council and National Heart Foundation found teenagers were spending more time on phones, computers and tablets.

The report found 77% of students were spending more than two hours a day using electronic media for entertainment, while 24% were achieving the recommended 60 minutes or more of exercise each day.

Top 10 child health concerns:

• Excessive screen time
• Obesity
• Not enough physical activity
• Unhealthy diet
• Bullying
• Illegal drug use
• Family domestic violence
• Internet safety
• Child abuse and neglect
• Suicide

21st December 2015 - WORLD OBESITY PARTNERS WITH THE LANCET TO LAUNCH NEW INTERNATIONAL OBESITY COMMISSION

9th December 2015 - 37 COMPELLING REASONS WHY AUSTRALIA NEEDS A NATIONAL PHYSICAL ACTIVITY ACTION PLAN

27th April 2015 - CHILDHOOD OBESITY STUDY EMPHASISES IMPORTANCE OF EXERCISE FOR YOUNG AND OLD

9th April 2015 - NEW MOVEMENT AIMS TO GET CHILDREN PLAYING OUTSIDE

27th August 2014 - STUDY SHOWS DRINKS CHILDREN ASSOCIATE WITH SPORT ARE LARGELY UNHEALTHY

20th January 2014 - RESEARCH REVIEW SUGGESTS BENEFITS OUTWEIGH THE RISKS OF INJURY IN JUNIOR SPORT

4th November 2013 - PARENTS VALUE SWIMMING AND WATER SAFETY LESSONS ABOVE OTHER OUT-OF-SCHOOL ACTIVITIES 

5th October 2010 - ASSOCIATIONS JOINTLY ENDORSE NEW GUIDELINES FOR EXERCISE INTENSITY 


Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?

The news we publish at www.ausleisure.com.au is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.

However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.

Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.

Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.

Click here to subscribe


Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?

The news we publish at www.ausleisure.com.au is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.

However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.

Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.

Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.

Click here to subscribe.

 

supplier directory

The Complete Guide to Leisure Industry Products & Services.

See the directory see all

Envibe

With its sleek good looks and easy-to-use yet powerful functionality, Envibe is the premium fitness club software for the Australasian leisure, recreation and fitness industry. We are the most…

read more

Aquatics / Fitness / Recreation / Technology

 
 

BODY BIKE AUSTRALIA

BODY BIKE® International is a leading manufacturer of indoor bikes with a 20-year track record of creating the best indoor bikes. Stay connected with Body Bike Australia…

read more

Fitness / Recreation / Sport / Technology / Wellness

 
 

Aflex Inflatables

Aflex Inflatables are the leaders for obstacle courses, pool toys, waterparks and land-based watersides and fitness runs. They are industry leaders offering the widest range of pool, lake and beach…

read more

Aquatics / Play / Waterparks

 
 

Pico Play

Pico Play is a global leader in the planning, design, development and construction of world-class themed attractions and entertainment that deliver extraordinary and memorable experiences to millions…

read more

Attractions / Consultants / Design / Recreation / Tourism

 
 

APT Asia Pacific Pty Ltd

APT (Advanced Polymer Technology) is the leading global manufacturer of polyurethane-based materials, acrylic coatings and synthetic turf products for sporting and recreational applications. From…

read more

Environment / Sport / Surfaces / Technology

 
 

BioLab Australia Pty Ltd

BioGuard is Australia and New Zealand’s most trusted supplier of premium, innovative and affordable commercial water treatment systems and chemicals. BioGuard offers a comprehensive range of…

read more

Aquatics / Technology / Waterparks

 
 

Jonas Leisure

JonasLeisure offers a complete range of leading leisure and recreation software brands – envibe, Centaman, Gladstone Health & Leisure, The Retention People, Nutrition Complete and…

read more

Aquatics / Billing / Fitness / Recreation / Sport

 
 

SWIMPLEX AQUATICS

Swimplex Aquatics are a world-class company dedicated to the commercial pool, waterslide industry. We are Australian market leaders servicing all states Australia wide. Swimplex provide a full…

read more

Aquatics / Attractions / Design / Play / Waterparks

 
 
 
 

get listed with our suppliers directory

Get your business noticed in our targeted directory. Viewed by 10,000 industry professionals per week!

list your business