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Study finds link between screen time and anxiety, depression in children

New research from the Faculty of Education has found a link between screen time and anxiety and depression in children.

The study, led by assistant professor of education and Canada Research Chair in Neuroscience and Learning Disorders Emma Duerden, also found children were on screens for more than double the daily recommended amount during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Duerden, who leads the Developing Brain research program, co-authored the study alongside Diane Seguin and Amira Hmidan.

Published in July in BMC Psychology, the study builds off previous research by Duerden that found children’s screen time use skyrocketed during the pandemic to an average of just under six hours per day. Some children in the earlier study were on their screens for a staggering 13 hours per day—nearly every waking minute.

“We were pretty astounded by these findings, but of course this was a period of crisis for everyone,” Duerden said.

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