Is it OK to use cartoons to keep my 5-month-old busy while I do things around the house?

Posted under Ask the Mediatrician.

Q: I have a question about my five month old daughter and TV. She likes to watch E/I cartoons. Is it ok for me to let her watch them when I have things around the house I need to do? If allowing her to watch cartoons is not good for her, what are other activities I can do to keep her occupied so I can get things done? Answer by Dr. Michael Rich, The Mediatrician

My 4 year old is obsessed with the Disney Channel, what should I do?

Posted under Ask the Mediatrician.

Q: Recently my 4 year old daughter has found a new, almost obsessive interest in the Disney Channel shows (Hannah Montana, Wizards of Waverly Place, etc). TV was never a problem before, but now she would rather watch these shows than do anything else. I also think that these shows may be too big-kid for her. What do you think, and how can I get her away from the TV without fuss?

Research Wrap-Up: Recently Published Studies on Children, Media and Health- August 7, 2009.

Posted under Research Blog.

Here is a list of recently published studies on children, media, and health which explore a range of topics: Early Childhood Care, 179(6), August 2009 Special Issue: Music in the early years: Research, theory and practice. Jenssen, B.P., Klein, J.D., Salazar,L.F., Daluga, N.A., DiClemente , R.J. (2009). Exposure to tobacco on the internet: Content analysis… Read more »

How can I address sexism in the media with my kids?

Posted under Ask the Mediatrician.

Q: I see a lot of TV shows where women are not treated respectfully. How would you recommend talking to kids about sexism in the media? It’s rather like having a drunken bully over for dinner every night. How do you explain to your kids why you keep letting this kind of person into their home?

How can we set good examples of media use for our kids?

Posted under Ask the Mediatrician.

Q: My child is still an infant, so he isn’t using much media yet. But I am realizing that my husband and I are constantly “connected”! Our laptops, cell phones, and iPods are always on, mostly for work reasons. How should we limit our own media use to set the best example for our children?

Are Headphones Safe for Your Ears?

Posted under Research Blog.

These days, headphones join us on the bus, on the train, on the sidewalk, mid-conversation with a friend, and in the check-out line. These contexts might make it difficult to hear, which might lead us to turn the volume all the way up. But how loud is too loud? A study published in the Archives… Read more »

Music Lyrics: How Much Substance Use?

Posted under Research Blog.

The following was written by guest blogger Dr. Brian Primack, University of Pittsburgh researcher and author of the new study Content Analysis of Tobacco, Alcohol, and Other Drugs in Popular Music. Let me start out by emphasizing what this article was not: it does not show the effect of music lyrics on young people.  It… Read more »

Hip-Hop, Sex, and Gender Dynamics

Posted under Research Blog.

A recent New York Times article explored a 3 year study of the hip-hop club scene in NY city.  Munoz-Laboy et al observed dancing and behavior at these clubs and ran interviews with young men and women.  They were surprised to find that even with the sexual and often misogynistic overtones of the music, young… Read more »

Rap Videos and Risk Behaviors

Posted under Research Blog.

A new study by Peterson and Wingood et al found that "African-American female adolescents who spend more time watching rap music videos are more likely to participate in high-risk behaviors such as binge drinking and sex with multiple partners, to test positive for marijuana, and to have a negative body image." See abstract See press… Read more »

Tweens Get Their Music from TV

Posted under Research Blog.

Alloy Media + Marketing estimates that pre-teens spend $30 million of their own money annually, and influence the spending of $126 million of their parents’ money.  Their music purchases include pre-packaged pop sensations, often from television shows, such as That’s So Raven, Hannah Montana, and TV-movie High School Musical.