Forum

Is the media a health hazard for children?

Forum

Is the media a health hazard for children?

Michael McDowell, Jane Roberts

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Abstract

Watching television, playing video games and using the internet are popular pastimes for children and also powerful influences on child health, development and wellbeing. How powerful are these influences and what role do GPs have in optimising children’s interactions with the media?

Article Extract

General practitioners are well aware of the powerful interface between social context and child health, and the range of behavioural, emotional and developmental problems that may result and which have collectively been termed the ‘new morbidity.’ Yet teaching and research in paediatrics continues to be dominated by organic models of disease. How then do we attempt to understand a complex area such as the media (television, video games and the internet) and its influence on child health, development and wellbeing?