TV exposure may be associated with aggressive behavior in young children
Three-year-old children who are exposed to more TV appear to be at an increased risk for exhibiting aggressive behavior, according to a report in the November issue of Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals. "Early childhood aggression can be problematic for parents, teachers and childhood peers and sometimes is predictive of more serious behavior problems to come, such as juvenile delinquency, adulthood violence and criminal behavior," according to background information in the article. Various predictive factors for childhood aggression have been studied. These include parents' discipline style, neighborhood safety and media exposure. "After music, television is the medium children aged 0 to 3 years are exposed to the most." Although the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends no screen media for children younger than age 2, studies have found consistent use of television in that age group.
Jennifer A. Manganello, Ph.D., M.P.H., of University at Albany, State University of New York, Rensselaer, and Catherine A. Taylor, Ph.D., M.S.W., M.P.H., of Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, New Orleans, analyzed data from 3,128 mothers of children born from 1998 to 2000 in 20 large U.S. cities to examine associations of child television exposure and household television use with aggressive behavior in children. Parents were interviewed at the time of the child's birth and at one and three years. At three years, they were asked to report time the child spent watching TV directly as well as household TV use on a typical day. Aggression also was assessed at 3 years of age using a 15-item aggressive subscale for 2- and 3-year-old children. Demographic information and other risk factors for aggression were also noted.
About two-thirds (65 percent) of mothers reported that their 3-year-old child watched more than two hours of television per day. On average, children were exposed to an additional 5.2 hours of household TV use per day.
Direct child TV exposure and household TV use were both significantly associated with childhood aggression, after accounting for other factors such as parent, family, neighborhood and demographic characteristics. "One explanation that could link both child and household TV measures with aggression involves the parenting environment," the authors write. Households with higher rates of TV use may have fewer restrictions on children's viewing habits such as exposure to unregulated television content. Increased household television use may also affect daily routines such as eating and communication patterns and may decrease time spent on other activities.
"Current American Academy of Pediatrics recommendations mainly suggest limitations for direct child exposure to TV and other media; however, our findings suggest that additional household TV use may also be an important predictor of negative childhood outcomes, such as early childhood aggression," the authors conclude. "Future research in this area should consider inclusion of both of these TV variables along with additional parent-child interaction assessments, observational assessments when possible, quality and/or content of TV programs and longitudinal analyses."
Source: JAMA and Archives Journals
- Parents' wartime deployment associated with children's behavior problemsMon, 3 Nov 2008, 21:49:28 EST
- Positive parenting associated with less aggression in early-maturing teen girlsMon, 4 Aug 2008, 17:22:07 EDT
- Partner controlling behaviors appear to be associated with relationship violenceMon, 4 Apr 2011, 17:37:36 EDT
- Violence against mothers in bangladesh associated with health problems in young childrenMon, 3 Aug 2009, 16:45:52 EDT
- Children with low self-control more likely to become overweight preteensMon, 6 Apr 2009, 18:07:47 EDT
Articles on the same topic
- Study examines associations between antibiotic use during pregnancy and birth defectsMon, 2 Nov 2009, 18:24:12 EST
- TV Exposure May Be Associated With Aggressive Behavior In Young Childrenfrom Science DailyMon, 2 Nov 2009, 21:21:09 EST
- TV Exposure May Be Associated With Aggressive Behavior in Young Childrenfrom PhysorgMon, 2 Nov 2009, 18:21:20 EST
Latest Science NewsletterGet the latest and most popular science news articles of the week in your Inbox! It's free!
Learn more about
Check out our next project, Biology.Net
From other science news sites
Popular science news articles
No popular news yet
No popular news yet
- Stem cell transplant restores memory, learning in mice
- 2 landmark studies report on success of using image-guided brachytherapy to treat cervical cancer
- Calculating tsunami risk for the US East Coast
- Researchers discover mushrooms can provide as much vitamin D as supplements
- Cutting back on sleep harms blood vessel function and breathing control