The Turkish Journal of Pediatrics 2021 , Vol 63 , Num 5
Screen media exposure in pre-school children in Turkey: the relation with temperament and the role of parental attitudes
Burcu Akın Sarı 1 ,Hande Ayraler Taner 1 ,Zulal Törenli Kaya 2
1 Departments of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Başkent University Faculty of Medicine, Ankara, Turkey
2 Departments of Psychiatry, Başkent University Faculty of Medicine, Ankara, Turkey
DOI : 10.24953/turkjped.2021.05.010 Background. Electronic media have become an important element in the lives of modern children. Devices like televisions, smartphones and tablets are widely used by some parents in order to manage hyperactive, stubborn and impulsive children who need high-intensity stimuli. Consequently, a child`s temperament and parental attitudes affect the duration and frequency of 3-7-year-old children`s screen (television-smartphone-internet) use. Based on this information, the objective of the present study was to evaluate the relation between screen media exposure, the child`s temperament and parental attitudes in 3-7-year-old children.

Methods. The participants of this study were 210 children of 3 to 7 years of age. Rothbart`s Child Behavior List was used to assess temperament; the Parenting Attitude Research Instrument was used to determine the parental attitudes. Screen media exposure assessment questionnaire, which included questions about the age the child started using the TV, smartphone and/or internet, and the duration of their daily usage, were filled in with the children`s parents.

Results. It was found that the increase in activity level, approach and discomfort was negatively correlated to the age the child started watching television, while shyness was positively related to the same phenomenon. The scores of the discomfort temperament subscale had a direct relation to the duration of watching television. Background television is negatively related to attention, inhibitory control, and perceptual sensitivity. Dependency, marital conflict and strictness and authoritarianism parameters were found to be positively related to the duration of playing with a smartphone. Also, in this study we found that negative temperament characteristics adversely affected screen media exposure and poor parenting styles worsen this relationship.

Conclusions. Both temperament and parenting styles affect screen media exposure. In addition, it was understood that parenting styles also affect the relation between temperament and screen exposure. Parental information programs on this subject can eliminate the lack of information related to early screen media exposure in preschool children. Keywords : temperament, parenting, screen, toddler

Copyright © 2016