Monday, November 3, 2008

TV's negative effects on teens

The RAND corporation has shown in a 3 year study that there is some link, albeit not proven to be causal directly, linking teen pregnancy to TV shows with sexual content.

The study focused on 23 free and cable television programs popular among teenagers including situation comedies, dramas, reality programs and animated shows. Comedies had the most sexual content and reality programs the least.

"The television content we see very rarely highlights the negative aspects of sex or the risks and responsibilities," Chandra said. "So if teens are getting any information about sex they're rarely getting information about pregnancy or sexually transmitted diseases."

Also from the story - here's a stat that ought to wake you up if you're a parent - 1 in 5 15-19 yo sexually active females end up getting pregnant!


Teen pregnancy rates in the United States have declined sharply since 1991 but remain high compared to other industrialized nations. Nearly 1 million girls aged 15 to 19 years old become pregnant yearly, or about 20 percent of sexually active females in that age group. Most of the pregnancies were unplanned, the report said.

Also, violent video games have been shown to have a negative effect as well

A second study in the journal added to existing evidence that youths who play violent video games -- a worldwide trend with American children averaging 13 hours of video gaming a week -- led to increased physically aggressive behavior.

Researchers from the United States and Japan evaluated more than 1,200 Japanese youths and 364 Americans between 9 and 18 years old and found a "significant risk factor for later physically aggressive behavior ... across very different cultures."

I guess it goes without saying, but should be said - watch what you let your kids watch!

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