Screen Time Exposure in Preschool Children with ADHD: A Cross-Sectional Exploratory Study from South India

Document Type


Publication Title

Indian Journal of Psychological Medicine


Background: Concern is mounting regarding screen exposure among young children and its association with mental health. Children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) may be more vulnerable to its effects such as increased externalizing behaviors and problems with language and cognitive development and biological functions such as sleep. We aimed to assess screen exposure in preschool children with ADHD and to study the correlation of screen time with the severity of ADHD and parental stress levels. Methods: Children of age 2.5–6 years, diagnosed with ADHD (n = 56) were included, and details of the total duration of screen exposure, maximum continuous screen exposure time, and types of screen-based devices used, reasons for screen exposure were collected from primary caregivers. ADHD symptom severity was assessed on Conner's Abbreviated Rating Scale. Family interview for stress and coping, adapted for ADHD, was used to measure parental stress. Results: Total screen exposure time in preschool children with ADHD was more than the recommended standards in 80.4% of children, with a median of 140.00 minutes (range: 20–500 minutes). The most commonly used modality was television (98.2%), followed by mobile phones (87.3%), tablets (17.9%), and laptops (10.7%). The severity of ADHD (r = 0.29, P = 0.02) and parent stress levels (r = 0.29, P = 0.03) were positively correlated to increased screen time exposure in the child. Conclusions: Preschool children with ADHD have screen exposure above the recommended duration of one hour/day. Structured parent training programs for children with preschool ADHD and providing developmentally appropriate interventions are essential in curtailing screen time exposure and also to address parental stress.

First Page


Last Page




Publication Date


This document is currently not available here.