Recently, many of our clients have emphasized the profound impact of reducing high-stimulation TV and digital content on their children. At Top Chiropractic, we are passionate about working with children and have witnessed remarkable improvements in those facing neurodevelopmental challenges. In this blog, we'll explore how the sensory, visual, and auditory inputs from digital content can influence your child's nervous system and why it's essential to consider what they watch.
High-Stimulation Digital Content And The Brain
Our bodies are like high-performance cars, and just like vehicles require the right fuel, humans need the proper input for their nervous system and brain. Fast-paced, loud, colourful, and ever-changing TV shows can significantly affect your child's cognitive development, as they essentially rewire the brain for constant engagement.
In some of these shows, frames change multiple times every second, each shift in colour and content triggering a surge of positive dopamine response. This results in your child's brain constantly shifting its attention, seemingly entranced by the content. You may have observed children staring blankly for hours at the screen, seemingly motionless, while their brain and nervous system are working tirelessly.
This continuous exposure to high-stimulation content programs the brain to become accustomed to frequent micro-releases of dopamine and serotonin (APA, 2023). The child begins seeking constant high-stimulation situations, making it challenging for them to engage in slower, low-stimulation activities like school, where sustained focus on one thing is required. Their attention span can diminishes to mere seconds, and only fast-paced TV or digital content can satisfy their cravings for constant excitement.
Low-Stimulation Digital Content Recommendations
If you're concerned about the impact of digital content on your child's nervous system, the first step is to reduce exposure to TV shows and transition to alternatives like books and audio books. However, we understand that this transition can be challenging. To help you make this shift, we've compiled a list of recommended low-stimulation TV shows from our clients:
- Kipper: Available on various streaming platforms such as Netflix and Amazon Prime Video.
- Clifford the Big Red Dog: You can watch it on PBS Kids or on streaming services like Amazon Prime Video.
- Omar and Hana: Available on YouTube and various Islamic educational websites.
- Tumble Leaf: This Emmy-winning series can be enjoyed on Amazon Prime Video.
- The Snowy Day: Find it on Amazon Prime Video as well.
- Trash Truck: Available on Netflix, where it's sure to captivate your child's imagination.
- Sarah and Duck: You can follow the adventures of Sarah and Duck on streaming platforms like Amazon Prime Video.
- Mister Rogers' Neighbourhood: This timeless classic is available for streaming on Amazon Prime Video and PBS Kids.
These shows can serve as a bridge to a more balanced and realistic sensory, auditory and visual experience for your child. By making mindful choices about the digital content your child consumes, you can positively influence their nervous system, attention span, and overall well-being. Your child's health and development are worth the investment.
The current guidelines recommend introducing screens after 24 months, and for children aged 2-5 years, limit their screen time to 1 hour a day. They also recommend ensuring children are provided with ‘screen time free days’ (NHS, 2016).
By introducing low stimulation content and staying within the screen time guidelines, you will be helping your child’s developing nervous system.
Chiropractic Care And Your Child's Nervous System
At Top Chiropractic, we focus on removing interference from children’s nervous systems by realigning the upper cervical vertebrae, which can misalign during traumatic births or early childhood accidents. This misalignment can impact the brainstem and central nervous system as it is a highly moveable section of the spine in a very sensitive area.
If you think that a misalignment of the upper cervical spine may be affecting your child’s development, please get into contact with us. You can email our clinic at email@example.com, book in a complimentary discovery call here or book in a New Patient Examination with Dr. Luke here.
- APA, 2023. Speaking of Psychology: Why our attention spans are shrinking, with Gloria Mark, PhD. Available from: https://www.apa.org/news/podcasts/speaking-of-psychology/attention-spans
- NHS, 2016. Screentime for your child; a guide for parents. Available from: https://nhsforthvalley.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/Screen-Time.pdf
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