CBBC extended hours to mean less sleep for many of its viewers

by Jenny Stephenson

CBBC extended hours to mean less sleep for many of its viewers

HappySleepers feels that 9pm is too late for many children to watch TV.

Light emitted from television (along with other electronic devices like mobile phones or tablets) is currently a big factor contributing towards children’s delayed sleep, so it comes as something of a disappointment that the BBC has decided to extended transmission of its dedicated channel for 6-12 year olds by two hours until 9 o’clock at night.

Despite concerns, the national broadcaster has decided to push ahead with the changes to CBBC which could take place from February 2016. Although responsibility should ultimately lie with parents, the move won’t be making life for those already facing bedtime battles any easier.

Light emitted from powered display technologies blocks the release of melatonin, the hormone associated with the onset of sleep, and furthermore the content viewed itself may increase arousal states and make it harder to wind down for the night.

A growing body of research indicates that sleep problems in children - including getting an hour less sleep - can have a significant impact on daytime behaviour. It can lead to irritability, hyperactivity, difficulty regulating and managing feelings effectively, poorer cognitive functioning and decreased learning.

Jenny Stephenson at HappySleepers talked to Daily Mail: