Why are Devices in your Child’s Bedroom?
As parents, we have concerns about bedtime stress and children going to sleep on time. So, how does this relate to gaming? Earlier studies have shown that children losing sleep during the week are related to over sleeping on the weekend, however; recent studies conducted by Van den Bulck, (2004) contradict these findings.
Technology today offers a wide array of devices to pass unconstructed time such as falling asleep.
Gaming on PC or a Console
Surfing the Internet
Recent research by Van den Bulck, (2004) explained that children between the ages of 13 and 16 who interact with these devices prior to going to bed leads to spending less time in bed and more time interacting with these devices. Evidence provided by Van de Bulck, (2004) indicated that children with gaming computers in their rooms went to bed significantly later; than those who had a television in their room.
Instead of putting your child’s computer in their room in order to eliminate noise from the game and their excitement while playing the game, try place a computer, laptop, or tablet in a family location with a set of appropriate headphones.
The light from the computer screen is usually very bright in your child’s room. These lights are an invitation to play on the computer. If your child is of the teenage years he or she may be very interested in talking with their friends at night or playing an online game. These factors have been proven to wake up sleeping children and teenagers from much needed sleep.
How can parents change the patterns of their child’s bedtime?
As parents you have control over your child’s environment and bedtime; your child’s personal space.
Simply Remove the Following
Internet accessible Device
Family Computer Time
Research shows that by reducing or removing these items from your children’s room can greatly benefit your child’s health and gaming habits. Moreover, your child will experience more sleep in addition to improved quality of sleep.
With the console in the living room, parents can observe what games are being played. Although you most likely purchased the game either online or at the game store you may not know what the game is about. In other words, you can slyly monitor the in game content your child is playing.
Children between the ages of 13 and 16 want and need their personal time online to communicate with friends and family. This can be conducted on a family computer or handheld device before bedtime. Therefore, you are not taking away their online access, only their access while in their bedroom. In doing this, your child may not be compliant. However, in the end, you will see improved sleep patterns, and physical activity from your child during the day.
Van den Bulck, J. (2004). Television viewing, computer game playing, and Internet use and self-reported time to bed and time out of bed in secondary-school children. SLEEP-NEW YORK THEN WESTCHESTER-, 27(1), 101-104.