Salivary Cortisol in Relation to the Use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in School-Aged Children


Long periods of use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) may raise strong emotions and lead to cog-nitive fatigue. The current study focused on the impact of ICT use the preceding day on the next-day salivary cortisol pattern in 72 school-aged children (39 at the age ten and 33 at the age 13). Salivary cortisol levels were measured at five time points from awakening to bedtime. Time spent in different ICT activities the day before salivary sampling was measured by an activity diary. Results showed that the participants who had used ICT on an average three hours the preceding day showed a significantly reduced cortisol increase one hour after awakening (awakening response) com-pared to those who had used ICT not at all or less than one hour after controlling for pubertal status and the level of depression. The results suggest a stress response as a consequence of a long period of ICT use.

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Wallenius, M. , Hirvonen, A. , Lindholm, H. , Rimpela, A. , Nygard, C. , Saarni, L. & Punamaki, R. (2010). Salivary Cortisol in Relation to the Use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in School-Aged Children. Psychology, 1, 88-95. doi: 10.4236/psych.2010.12012.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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