What is The Age Limit For Screen Time?

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Quick Summary
  • Screen addiction is among the top concerns for parents today. Questions like ‘how much time are children spending in front of screens?’ and ‘what is the right amount of time?’ are among the most frequently asked nowadays.
  • When considering age-appropriate screen times, it seems that for young children, a maximum of 1-2 hours is recommended. As they get older, this duration increases.
  • One of the primary reasons screen addiction is so concerning is that children’s self-control systems, related to this matter, are not yet fully developed.
  • Especially for younger children, parental control systems are a significant aid for parents in managing screen time. These systems can monitor the time spent on social media and other platforms, supporting you in tracking your child’s digital habits, even when they’re on their own


Today, technological devices have become an integral part of our lives. From the moment they are born, children are immersed in this technology and learn how to spend time in front of screens. However, the accessibility of technology brings a problem that every parent grapples with: “Is this much screen time too much for my child?, What is the recommended screen time by age?”

What is the Ideal Screen Time By Age Group?

According to a document published by the NHS (National Health Service), the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) suggests that children should have days where they are completely away from screens. If this isn’t possible, screen time should be limited to two hours.

NICE also mentions that some of this time can be allocated to educational content or adjusted based on remote learning needs. However, it’s crucial that the content is age-appropriate. If you have doubts about selecting educational content for your younger children, you can refer to our article on “How to Choose Suitable Content for Children Under 11?

What is the Recommended Screen Time for Preschoolers (4 – 5 Years Old)?

The preschool years are crucial for a child’s cognitive development. Their brains develop rapidly during this period as they explore their surroundings and build foundational skills for the future. Educational content online can be highly beneficial for them. However, spending too much time on screens can weaken their connection to reality and pose risks in terms of eye health and orthopedics. Hence, experts believe that screen time should be quite limited for this age group. For children aged 4 – 5, daily screen time should be around 1 hour.

What Should be the Screen Time for Children Aged 6 – 9?

During school years, children’s relationships with screens start to evolve. They become more independent in their app and social media choices. Parental guidance remains crucial at this stage to keep children safe while they continue using technology. For ages 6, 7, 8, and 9, a daily screen time of about 2 hours is adequate. Screen time for school-aged children shouldn’t interfere with their physical and educational activities and should be planned with suitable content.

Nutcracker is an excellent choice, especially for children in this age range. As school-aged children become bolder in their content choices and spend more time in front of screens, Nutcracker selects age-appropriate content on the internet but also provide you insights about content consumption habits, even on youtube and gaming platforms like Steam, PSN.

Should I Limit My 10-12-Year-Old’s Screen Time?

As children approach adolescence, they become more accustomed to what the internet offers. They not only watch videos but also play games and navigate social networks. The vast world of the internet can easily become a distraction for them. They might develop screen addiction without realising how much time they’ve spent. Therefore, limiting screen time is recommended for children aged 10 – 12. Depending on your child’s needs and character, this can extend up to 3 hours.

Should I Limit My 13-16-Year-Old’s Screen Time?

By ages 13 – 16, children start using the internet more independently. They spend time on screens not just for education and entertainment but also for academic research. They might start taking phones or tablets to school. Teen screentime should focus more on the quality of content rather than duration.If you’re unsure how to discuss online safety risks and concerns with your child, you can quickly check our article on “How to Discuss Online Dangers with Your Child“.

How Should I Approach Screen Time for Adolescents Aged 17 and Above?

Transitioning to young adulthood changes one’s relationship with technology. These are years when your child begins to mature and undergo significant life changes. They might start planning their careers or exploring and developing skills that could benefit them professionally in the future. The varying responsibilities, as compared to childhood, make it challenging to set a one-size-fits-all screen time. At this point, screen time limits vary depending on individual needs.

Therefore, the best way to guide your child, who is now on the brink of adulthood, is to maintain open communication. If you feel their internet use is excessive, approach the topic differently than you would with a younger child. Make them feel like a responsible adult, discuss your concerns, and talk about the potential adverse effects of screen addiction, even in adulthood.