Vital Signs: Health guidelines for young kids

Kids ages zero to five getting too much screen time and not enough play time.

Now, local experts have something to say. World Health Organizations said they should spend 180 minutes in a variety of physical activities.

At a daycare in Hastings, they get a lot of play time.

“We are outside every chance we can get. We’ll utilize trees, leaves, the texture and shape any chance we can get,” said Amanda Cusatis, Daycare Director.

Dr. Leonard a Hastings Pediatrician is a proponent of kids getting a lot of play time. He added that folks need to start their kids with physical activity early. This could setup a lifetime of positive health,

“Getting kids outside, off the couch, gives them experience, allows them to develop and learn to cope with the world we live in, including their peers,” said Dr. Leonard.

The who, comes down hard on screen time, kids three to five keep it under and hour of screen time a day.

Dr. Leonard said he sees no real benefit on young kids.

“Past the age of 2 all screen time should be monitored by parents or guardians. Kids can learn to use median in communicative and learning ways. But these should be monitored and those should be taught.”

He adds to keep a tight reign on older kids and their electronics. They are never right before bed.

“Young brains sort of turns off and gets ready for sleep in a different way than the adult brain. Children are not just small adults and they can’t be treated that way,” said Dr. Leonard.

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