Evidence-based guidelines for wise use of electronic games by children
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Electronic games (e-games) are widely used by children, often for substantial durations, yet to date there are no evidence based guidelines regarding their use. The aim of this paper is to present guidelines for the wise use of e-games by children based on a narrative review of the research. This paper proposes a model of factors that influence child–e-games interaction. It summarises the evidence on positive and negative effects of use of e-games on physical activity and sedentary behaviour, cardio-metabolic health, musculoskeletal health, motor coordination, vision, cognitive development and psychosocial health. Available guidelines and the role of guidelines are discussed. Finally, this information is compiled into a clear set of evidence-based guidelines, about wise use of e-games by children, targeting children, parents, professionals and the e-game industry. These guidelines provide an accessible synthesis of available knowledge and pragmatic guidelines based on e-game specific evidence and related research. Practitioner Summary: E-games are an important part of life for many children. Evidence suggests they impact on many aspects of children’s behaviour, health and development, though many issues lack convincing evidence. These evidence-based guidelines provide an accessible synthesis of available knowledge and pragmatic guidelines based on e-game specific evidence and related research.
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