Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Children Getting Wired Early for High Tech

Increased ergonomics health risk for kids using tech equipment ...

"As technology has steadily crept into the family over the years, each of the boys has adopted it earlier than his brothers.

"In the period of 10 years, between the cellphones, the GameCubes, the Game Boys and everything else ... there's been a huge jump," said Chris McGrath, 46. "Today, they have all these different little high-tech gimmicks to keep them entertained."

Like the McGrath boys, most kids are adapting to technology earlier than ever before.

Children in the United States are using video games, cellphones and portable music players by age 7 --- about six months earlier than just a year ago, according to a recent online survey of 3,540 parents.

On average, kids use televisions by age 4, desktop computers and video game systems by about age 6, and cellphones and portable digital media players by around age 9, according to the survey.

That's good news for the electronics industry, but is it healthy for kids? A growing number of experts are beginning to wonder.

"There is enough evidence out there to say that if you overuse any of these technologies, you're going to have problems," said Alan Hedge, a professor of ergonomics at Cornell University in Ithaca, N.Y.

Claims of electronics-related health problems in kids are growing."   continued ...   (Via Mac News)

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