Screens, Teens, and Psychological Well-Being: Evidence From Three Time-Use-Diary Studies

teen screen flickr.jpg

The notion that digital-screen engagement decreases adolescent well-being has become a recurring feature in public, political, and scientific conversation. The current level of psychological evidence, however, is far removed from the certainty voiced by many commentators.

There is little clear-cut evidence that screen time decreases adolescent well-being, and most psychological results are based on single-country, exploratory studies that rely on inaccurate but popular self-report measures of digital-screen engagement. In this study, which encompassed three nationally representative large-scale data sets from Ireland, the United States, and the United Kingdom (N = 17,247 after data exclusions) and included time-use-diary measures of digital-screen engagement, we used both exploratory and confirmatory study designs to introduce methodological and analytical improvements to a growing psychological research area.

We found little evidence for substantial negative associations between digital-screen engagement—measured throughout the day or particularly before bedtime—and adolescent well-being.


Link to article here


Disagreements in the care of critically ill children (Nuffield Council on Bioethics)


The Nuffield Council on Bioethics has published a briefing note outlining the factors that can contribute to disagreements between parents and healthcare staff about the care and treatment of critically ill babies and young children. It concludes that the Government and NHS leaders could do more to foster good, collaborative relationships between parents and healthcare staff across the UK.

The care and treatment of critically ill children often involves complexity and uncertainty. Disagreements can arise between parents and healthcare staff about the best course of action, and sometimes these become entrenched. Recent high-profile court cases in the UK have highlighted the damaging effects that these kinds of disagreements can have on everyone involved.

The reasons why disagreements develop are wide ranging, but include poor communication – such as conflicting messages being given to families by different members of staff, or the use of insensitive language – and delays in seeking resolution interventions, such as mediation.

The Nuffield Council has highlighted areas of action for healthcare policy-makers and NHS leaders that could help to prevent prolonged and damaging disagreements developing in future, or to resolve them more quickly.

Overall, the aim should be:

  • good communication between families and staff and an understanding of differing perspectives
  • appropriate involvement of parents in discussions and decisions about the care and treatment of their child
  • timely use of resolution interventions, such as mediation, in cases of disagreement
  • attention to the profound psychological effects that disagreements can have for families and staff.

Link to article here

Transition to adult services (Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH))

Transitioning from child to adult health services can be scary for young people when it is not well planned. RCPCH has brought together a range of resources, best practice examples and case studies from young people to inform the delivery of high quality care for this age group. You can also watch a webinar in which Dr Shiela Puri, Dr Janet McDonagh and Dr Emma Howard shared their clinical experiences of delivering transition services from both paediatric and adult perspectives.


Link to article here

New advice seeks to prevent parent/doctor conflict in paediatrics


While disagreement with the management of a child’s healthcare is rare, when it does happen it can have profound effects on the child, their family and health professionals.

The number of children living with complex and/or life limiting conditions is continuing to rise as advanced forms of life sustaining treatment become available. There is also a large amount of information online about innovative but unproven treatments for serious illnesses which increases the likelihood of conflict in paediatric practice.

Achieving Consensus: advice for paediatricians and other health professionals on prevention, recognition and management of conflict in paediatric practice suggests practices which aim to support professionals to identify and reduce disharmony whilst maintaining the child’s best interest.

Lead author and Registrar of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH), Dr Mike Linney, said:

Health professionals have to make decisions every day about treatment: some routine and some more emotive and complex. These decisions, which always have the child’s best interests at heart, are made alongside the family, but in a very small number of cases, doctors and families disagree.

Conflict is physically and mentally damaging for everyone involved, and in recent years, as cases are propelled into the public domain, further complexity is added to an already sensitive and stressful situation.

This new document, for the first time, brings together practices covering prevention, recognition and management of situations where conflict exists, to support healthcare professionals either prevent disharmony, or manage it.


Link to article page here

Adolescents with chronic illness and the transition to self-management: A systematic review

health literacy
Image: Pixabay


Early to late adolescence is an intense period of development.

Anecdotal evidence suggests that teens may avoid or ignore treatment regimens.

Teens must master and prioritize daily complex symptom management.

Parents need to communicate, monitor adherence, and be a resource.



Chronic illness effects one in ten adolescents worldwide. Adolescence involves a desire for autonomy from parental control and the necessity to transition care from parent to child. This review investigates the transition to adolescent self-management of chronic illness treatment behaviors in the context of parent-adolescent relationships.


A systematic search of PubMed, CINAHL, and Web of Science was conducted from earliest database records to early June 2017. Articles were included if they focused on adolescents, addressed illness self-management, discussed the parent-adolescent relationship, and were published in English. Articles were excluded if the chronic illness was a mental health condition, included children younger than 10 years of age, or lacked peer review.


Nine studies met inclusion criteria. Outcomes included challenges to adolescent self-management, nature of the parent-adolescent relationship, illness representation, perceptions of adolescent self-efficacy in compliance, medical decision making, laboratory measures, and adolescent self-management competence. Across diagnoses, parents who were available to monitor, be a resource, collaborate with their adolescent, and engage in ongoing dialogue were key in the successful transition to autonomous illness management.


There is a paucity of research addressing the experiences of adolescents in becoming experts in their own care.

Link to article here

New NICE Guidance: Specialist neonatal respiratory care for babies born preterm

NICE guidance 3

This guideline covers specific aspects of respiratory support (for example, oxygen supplementation, assisted ventilation, treatment of some respiratory disorders, and aspects of monitoring) for preterm babies in hospital.


This guideline includes recommendations on:

Link to guidance here