• Journal Article

Household television access: Associations with screen time, reading, and homework among youth

Citation

Wiecha, J., Sobol, A. M., Peterson, K. E., & Gortmaker, S. L. (2001). Household television access: Associations with screen time, reading, and homework among youth. Ambulatory Pediatrics, 1(5), 244-251. DOI: 10.1367/1539-4409(2001)001<0244:HTAAWS>2.0.CO;2

Abstract

Objective.-We examined how household factors that mediate television access are associated with screen time (television, videos, movies, and computer and video games), reading, and homework. Methods.-We conducted a self-report survey among 1197 sixth and seventh graders in 10 middle schools in 4 Boston-area communities in 1995. To assess independent associations, SUDAAN linear regressions were calculated to control for respondent characteristics and household access and to account for clustered sampling in the school-based design. Results.-Total viewing (television, videos, movies, and computer and video games) averaged 3.35 +/- 2.2 hours per day. In multivariate regressions, independent direct associations with total viewing were observed for the following categories: youth has a television in the bedroom: 0.64 hours per day (P < .001), never/seldom has family dinners: 0.55 hours (P < .01), no parental limits on television time: 0.48 hours (P < .01): and each additional television outside the youth's bedroom, 0.12 hours (P < .05). Similar results held when television/video/niovie use was examined separately from computer/video game use. Youth reported an average of 1.6 +/- 1.1 hours of reading and homework per day, Parental limits on television time were associated with 0.21 hours more reading per day (P < .01), whereas a television in the bedroom was associated with 0.18 hours less (P < .01). Conclusions.-Reducing intrahousehold television access may enhance clinical, school, and Community strategies to reduce youth television viewing and other screen time