Parent technology use, parent–child interaction, child screen time, and child psychosocial problems among disadvantaged families

Rosa Sze Man WONG, Keith T.S. TUNG, Nirmala RAO, Cynthia LEUNG, Anna N.N. HUI, Winnie W.Y. TSO, King-Wa FU, Fan JIANG, Jin ZHAO, Patrick IP

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlespeer-review

36 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Objective: To disentangle the pathways of parent technology use, parent–child interactions, child screen time, and child psychosocial difficulties among disadvantaged families in Hong Kong. 

Study design: Parents of 1254 3-year-old children from the KeySteps@JC project reported on the number of hours their children used electronic devices every day and evaluated their children's psychosocial behaviors using the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire. These parents also reported on their own digital device usage patterns and the frequency of parent–child interactions and provided sociodemographic data. Structural models were tested with parent technology use (independent variable), parent technological distractions and parent–child interactions and child screen time (mediators), child psychosocial problems (dependent variable), and children's age and sex and family socioeconomic status index (confounding variables). 

Results: Parent distraction with technology during parent–child interactions completely mediated the overall association between parent problematic digital technology use and child screen use duration. Parent problematic digital technology use was positively and directly associated with child psychosocial difficulties. In addition, it was indirectly related to child psychosocial difficulties through technological distractions and reductions in parent–child interactions and increased media use by children. 

Conclusion: Higher parent digital technology usage was associated with reduced parent–child interactions and increased child screen time and psychosocial difficulties in disadvantaged families. These results suggest that limiting parents' use of electronic devices in front of their young children could be beneficial for childhood psychosocial development. Copyright © 2020 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)258-265
JournalThe Journal of Pediatrics
Volume226
Early online dateJul 2020
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2020

Citation

Wong, R. S., Tung, K. T. S., Rao, N., Leung, C., Hui, A. N. N., Tso, W. W. Y., Fu, K.-W., Jiang, F., Zhao, J., & Ip, P. (2020). Parent technology use, parent–child interaction, child screen time, and child psychosocial problems among disadvantaged families. The Journal of Pediatrics, 226, 258-265. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jpeds.2020.07.006

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Parent technology use, parent–child interaction, child screen time, and child psychosocial problems among disadvantaged families'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.