🇬🇧 Media consumption in toddlers and children

🇬🇧 Media consumption in toddlers and children

Increased media consumption harms your child!

Over the years, many things have changed in my everyday therapeutic work, and one thing in particular: The number of children who do not engage in speech, speak their own language, do not make eye contact, and do not respond to being spoken to has changed alarmingly.

During the medical history interview with parents, it often emerges that children as young as about one year old are already consuming media – sometimes for many hours a day and over several years. Parents are only irritated when language is still absent in the third year of life, or when the children speak their own language and show behavioral problems.

In the valuable early childhood period, children need to interact with a you and discover the world. However, this is denied to them in front of electronic devices! (Language) development disorders are often the result, because cell phones, tablets and televisions are neither an adequate substitute for a communication partner nor a German language school.
Since many parents do not know that increased media consumption is harmful for children, I would like to take this opportunity to educate and inform about the negative effects of increased media consumption.


Please read the following article to the end:

Goals of speech therapy for young children

In therapy, I want to create a very concrete, tangible learning environment, which creates a direct relationship to the child’s everyday life, so that the children learn to grasp the world physically and not through media. You will find game ideas, photos and examples from my everyday therapy and logopedic work with children.

The primary goal of logopedic work is eye contact: Facing the child is a you who specifically addresses speech to the child and to this you the child can in turn specifically address speech. Child and communication partner have a relationship, refer to each other and share a common third thing, e.g. an object they talk about. This is the basis of any communication and therefore the basis of any speech therapy work. Furthermore, speech therapy has the intention to expand the everyday and world knowledge and thus the vocabulary and the utterance length of the children very concretely in the play situation. Because the everyday life of children, such as buying clothes and shoes, in today’s world is often done by „swiping on the cell phone“ or by mouse click and little in the store.
Perhaps my thinking is not really contemporary when I look at the progress in the digital world and yes, I certainly recognize the blessing of digitalization. But I am also aware of the impact and dangers on children’s language development and social behavior, I experience it daily. My experience goes back to 10 years of therapy in children’s logopedics, so I am not referring to scientific studies but to my daily experience. It is often impossible to imagine everyday life in children without the media. Children spend many, many hours in front of various screens.

Symptoms that children with increased media consumption show,
are, in my experience, the following:

The children
– do not make eye contact.
– show no interest in their you.
– do not respond to being addressed or called by their name, and
– often live as if in their own world.
– develop their own language, which is completely incomprehensible to the communication partner or recite fragments from films, the content of which they themselves do not understand and which does not fit into the conversation situation.
– also show dependencies; they can no longer do without media.
– show behavioral problems on a secondary level. Because if a child cannot make itself understood, cannot express its needs and does not understand language, this naturally creates pressure to suffer.

Language means communication! And communication, as mentioned above, is always directed from a ME to a YOU and refers to a common third, a common content. Consumer electronics do not talk to us and our children, they only shut our children up!
The following statement by Steve Jobs, founder of Apple and inventor of the tablet should give us pause for thought when he responded to the New York Times question

„…your kids must love the iPad, right?“:

„They haven’t used it yet. We’re limiting the amount of time our kids spend at home with technology.“

Steve Jobs


My appeal to all parents: the dose makes the poison

Minimize your toddlers‘ and children’s screen time to a minimum or exceptional situations. Psychologists recommend a maximum of 30 minutes of media consumption starting at age 3. I understand emergency situations like illness or rest after a long day at work, a long train or car ride. However, the cell phone, the tablet, the TV must not become the toy and everyday device of your toddler and child or even advance to digital childcare! How is your child supposed to acquire the communication behavior that is determined by eye contact? How is a child’s brain, which is in the midst of maturation, supposed to be able to develop if it doesn’t get any stimuli? How is your child supposed to acquire practical knowledge of the world, how is he supposed to develop his vocabulary, if he cannot grasp the world with his own hands? Therefore, my request: reflect on your own media time in the presence of your child as well as your child’s media time and see where you can reduce it and how you can create child-friendly and meaningful alternatives. Please also share this information with your childcare providers and grandparents.

Here are additional links on the topic of childhood media consumption: