Turkish Archives of Pediatrics
Original Article

The possible effects of maternal electronic media device usage during pregnancy on children’s sleep patterns

1.

Department of Social Pediatrics, Gaziantep University Faculty of Medicine, Gaziantep, Turkey

2.

Department of Obstetric and Gynecology, Gaziantep University Faculty of Medicine, Gaziantep, Turkey

3.

Department of Biophysics, Gaziantep University, Faculty of Medicine, Gaziantep, Turkey

Turk Arch Pediatr 2021; 56: 254-260
DOI: 10.5152/TurkArchPediatr.2020.20138
Read: 117 Downloads: 62 Published: 30 April 2021

Objective: In recent years, there has been increasing scientific evidence about potential health risks caused by electromagnetic fields because of electronic media devices. Therefore, this study aimed to examine the possible association between electronic media device usage during pregnancy and sleep patterns in children and the possible role of electronic media device presence in the sleeping environment on children’s sleep disturbances.

Material and Methods: The study was carried out with 400 healthy children aged between 1 month and 5 years whose parents agreed to complete the questionnaire form. The questionnaire form consisted of questions about the history of prenatal and postnatal electromagnetic field exposure caused by electronic media devices and the presence of sleep disturbances in children. Data were analyzed with SPSS for Windows program. P-values <0.05 were considered statistically significant.

Results: Sleep problems were more prevalent in children whose mothers lived near a base station during pregnancy (p<0.05). Sleep disorders were more frequent and sleep duration was shorter in children whose mothers used electronic devices (television, computer, mobile phone, wi-fi, microwave oven) during pregnancy (p<0.05). Sleep problems were also more common in children with electronic media devices in the sleeping environment during the night (p<0.05). Sleep disturbances were not associated with maternal consumption of tobacco or alcohol or history of disease during pregnancy (p>0.05).

Conclusion: Our results highlight that exposure to electromagnetic fields caused by electronic media devices during the prenatal or postnatal period could be associated with sleep patterns in childhood. Considering the widespread use of electronic media devices, it may be an important public health problem given the long-term consequences of sleep disorders in childhood.

Cite this article as: Çöl N, Kömürcü Karuserci Ö, Demirel C. The possible effects of maternal electronic media device usage during pregnancy on children’s sleep patterns. Turk Arch Pediatr 2021; 56(3): 254-60.

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