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Yadav J S1, Kaur S2

1Assistant Professor AIIMS, New Delhi, 2SRLN Hospital, Varanasi


Background: Electronic media include the DVD/VCD, TV, computer, video game, tablet, eBook, internet/ social media. It is not always desirable and excesses use causes various problems. The addiction of electronic media also called problematic internet use (PIU), internet addiction disorder (IAD), compulsive internet use (CIU) overuse internet.

Aim: To find out harmful effect on social, academic and emotional development in children due to use of electronic media.

Methodology: Abstracts of 60 studies evaluate from pub med, out of those 33 fulfilled the selection criteria, the studies reviewed on various domain like socio demographic data, types of electronic media, hours, influencing factors and consequences of electronic media uses. All the studies were formulated and data were analyzed.

Result: Electronic media uses are common in all age, genders, socio-economic status children but the orientations of early aged children are more towards video games, moves and they commonly missed their school or lunch due to excessive use, the elder children are more orientated towards social media; texting of massages, sexting, in these group female children are more victimized than male.

Discussion: Children and adolescents are risks of improper use of technology, lack of privacy, sharing too much information, or posting false information. There are no demarcations from where it will be beneficial and when will cause harm, but whatever studies available prove that Children are more vulnerable group and excessive use may lead to addiction which causes many social, legal, academic and health problems.

Key Words: Addiction, Electronic Media


Any invention of science is great achievement for all over the world but its excess use gives a lot of problem. It is fact that electronic media (TV, DVD/CD, Video game, film, internet, smart phone) providing information, education and entertainment. This is the positive influence one hand and it second hand its dark side negative impact. We discuss the present paper about negative impact of electronic media on child. Study suggested that excessive use of these electronic objects decreases the relationship in parents and child, poor social relation, concentration problem and increases the aggression, ADHA, depression, anxiety. Use violent video game and picture increase aggression and ADHD problem. Excessive use of TV, Video game, starts the depressive symptoms. a

DSM-5 does not recognize any disorder called "Internet addiction." it describe "Internet gaming disorder” that requires "further study" before becoming an official diagnosis1.According to a recent data 22% of teenagers log on to their favorite social media site more than 10 times a day, and more than half of adolescents log on to a social media site more than once a day. Seventy-five percent of teenagers now own cell phones, and 25% use them for social media, 54% use them for texting, and 24% use them for instant messaging2.Recent research indicates that there are frequent online expressions of offline behaviors, such as bullying, clique-forming, and sexual experimentation, that have introduced problems such as cyber bullying, privacy issues, and “sexting. In this article we have systemically reviewed the various studies focusing on problems associated with excessive uses of electronic media in children.

Aim To evaluate the harmful effect on social and emotional development in children due to use of electronic media.

Methodology Abstracts of 60 studies taken for review from pub med and MIDLINE search, out of those, aim of 6 studies were not matched with our aim and full articles of 13 abstracts were not available therefore those studies were excluded. Finally 31 studies included, the inclusion criteria were 1) age of children between 3-18 year 2) parent/ guardian agree to give consent 3) formal or informal schooling 4) children exposed to electronic media of any forms minimum 1 month 5) children having no physical or mental problems. The evaluation of socio demographic data, durations of internet exposure, type of victimization, encouraging and preventive role of parent, physical or psychological problem in internet exposed children done.


The mean reported daily duration of exposure to electronic media use was 6.6 hours (SD 4.1) for the clinic sample and 4.6 hours (SD 2.6) for the school sample (P < 0.01). Youth with externalizing disorders expended greater time video gaming, compared with youth with internalizing disorders3. Pathological gamers spent twice as much time playing as non pathological gamers and received poorer grades in school; pathological gaming also showed co morbidity with attention problems4. Computer and the Internet were connected with higher levels of aggression, anxiety.5and the television and other electronic media negatively influence children's mental and somatic well-being6.

The media have fundamentally changed the life of children and expose them to a powerful experiment with unpredictable technology7. The electronic media uses can lead to an increase in skills and social benefits but there is also the potential for harm such as sexting, cyber bullying, privacy issues, and it can affect health8.  M Moreno

A study of the entire adolescent high-school students, the sample consisted of 2017 students (51.8% boys, 48.2% girls) parents had failed to prevent the perpetration of online victimization in the three online activities most associated with Internet addiction were watching online pornography, online gambling and online gaming9.In another study we found that parents like play kids with internet  due to his/her busy schedule; 71% for mental stimulation or education, 62% contact with friends, 58% family spend time together.10 Know we discussed about the best selling game or likeness of child and adolescents game in 2012 it was  22.35% action, 8.3% adventure, 0.3 entertainments, 3.9% fighting, 21.2% shooting, 15.35% sport game.11,12

Cyber bullying

Cyber bullying is deliberately using digital media to communicate false, embarrassing, or hostile information about another person. It is the most common online risk for all teens and is a peer-to-peer risk. Although “online harassment” is often used interchangeably with the term “cyber bullying,” it is actually a different entity. Current data suggest that online harassment is not as common as offline. Cyber bullying is quite common, can occur to any young person online, and can cause profound psychosocial outcomes including depression, anxiety, severe isolation, and, tragically, suicide13.


Defined as sending receiving or forwarding sexually explicit messages devices. Many of these images become distributed rapidly via cell phones or the Internet. Recent survey revealed that 20% of teens have sent or posted nude or seminude photographs or videos of themselves. Some teens who have engaged in sexing have been threatened or charged with felony child pornography charges. Survey of Internet users, 33% of 10–15-year-olds reported having experienced online harassment and 15% having received a sexual solicitation in a 1-year period14, 15, 16.

Facebook depression

Face book depression,” defined as depression that develops when preteens and teens spend a great deal of time on social media sites then begin to exhibit classic symptoms of depression. The main risk to preadolescents and adolescents online today are risks from each other, risks of improper use of technology, lack of privacy, sharing too much information, or posting false information. These types of behavior put their privacy at risk. Internet activity also can make children and teenagers easier for marketers and fraudsters to target17.

ADHD and Media

ADHD in particular, are associated with overuse of media and the severity of ADHD specifically correlated with the amount of use. ADHD children may be vulnerable since these games operate in brief segments that are not attention demanding. In addition, they offer immediate rewards with a strong incentive to increase the reward by trying the next level. The time spent on these games may also exacerbate ADHD symptoms.18 An ADHD “child obsessed" with electronics. He spends most his free time watching TV and movies and playing computer games. He may have a television in his bedroom because otherwise he "monopolizes" the family television19. 13.5% (16.5% for boys and 9.5% for girls, p<0.01). Compared to non-addictive users, addictive Internet users were scored significantly lower on parental relationships and significantly higher on hyperactivity-impulsivity. Interaction analysis indicated that better parental relationship was associated with more reductions in risk of addictive Internet use for younger students than for older students, and with more risk of Internet addiction among higher than among lower hyperactivity-impulsivity students20.

Media and play

Media is controlling and displaying play time such as magazine replacing books, computer replacing broad game, outdoor massage replacing verbal speech. About TV magic box/big window of the world. TV affected the cognitive growth and development. It displaying the most discontinues feature and activity of childhood play21.

Mealtime and media

Class 2nd standard children watch mealtime TV were 60% girl and 63% boys and in 6 the class 72% boys 69% were girls that cause late/missing school and breakfast22.

Bed time and media

70% chidren watches bed time TV, film, song, cartoon with or without parents and 97% film seen by children on computer as well as on TV. Below 6th class, children like, animation 17%, action and horror 70%. 2nd class students like horror film 81 %. 6th class 19% girl and 18 % boy use social networking 32 %, geographic, history, discovery net planet 0.5 %23.

Media and crime

In Meta analyses violent videogame affect aggression, empathy, and social behavior across both eastern and western culture. Violent seen in media increased behavior aggressively in long term and short term.12 Children enjoy with media and some time develops an appetite for viewing violent material.

Violence on television tends to immediate distress and fear in children. High level of violence, hide general fearfulness about life and desensitized to real violence24. Boys tend to be more directly affected than girls25.

Media and physical, mental health

Social activities with parents are negatively associated with game addiction, although no relationship is found between gaming activities with parents and game addiction. Parental attitude toward gaming has a negative relationship with the addiction26. Games (Violent, excessive use) confused reality and fantasy. Video induced seizure, Obesity, postural, muscular and skeletal disorder. Tendonitis, nerve compression, carpal tunnel syndrome eye strain27,28,29. Depression, Anxiety Social phobia Suicide.30

Law for children

Many parents are aware that 13 years is the minimum age for most social media sites but do not understand why?

There are 2 major reasons.

First, 13 years is the age set by Congress in the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act. 1998 (COPPA).31 which prohibits Web sites from collecting information on children’s younger than 13 years without parental permission.

Second, the official terms of service for many popular sites now mirror the COPPA regulations and stats. This is the minimum age to sign on to sites such as Facebook and My Space.

There are many sites for preadolescents and younger children that do not have such an age restriction, such as Disney sites, Club Penguin, and others31.


 On analysis of socio demographic data, early aged children were more user of game, animation types of electronic media while in later age they were more liked to use face book, chatting, taxing massages or pictures, pornography through different kind of these changes might our due to biological, social and environmental as well as availability of different types of media in different settings, one study we find that 71% children use media for education, 62% contact with friends, 58% spend time family member together in these activities and even those family members not bother the long term consequences. In another study shown that children are more sensitive to types of media and due to missing of school, meal and important daily work, they can develop physical or psychological problem. The main risk to preadolescents and adolescents online today are risks from each other, risks of improper use of technology, lack of privacy, sharing too much information, or posting false information. Two studies reported that female genders were more victimized than male. Though electronic media are fast growing technology and research are not enough to explore every aspects of each group society.


 Uses of electronic media are more common in all age groups, gender and society, it affect differently on physical, psychological, academic and legal area. There are no demarcations from where it will be useful and when causes harm, but whatever studies available prove that Children are more vulnerable group and excessive use may lead to addiction which causes problems. However this review article addresses further research in various other related areas, it also needs legal policy for certain aspects. It is important that parents evaluate the sites on which their child wishes to participate to be sure that the site is appropriate or not for that child's age. For sites without age stipulations, however, there is room for negotiation, and parents should evaluate the situation via active conversation with their children.

Limitations: Studies taken for review not represents the uniform community and culture, therefore in some community where same frequency of internet use may consider normal than other. Though there are large populations of children of developing countries but limited studies available. We address for multicentre studies, covering larger sample size from different community setup.



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