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Clin Pediatr (Phila). 2009 Sep;48(7):715-9. doi: 10.1177/0009922809335667. Epub 2009 May 6.

Televisions in the bedrooms of racial/ethnic minority children: how did they get there and how do we get them out?

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Obesity Prevention Program, Department of Ambulatory Care and Prevention, Harvard Medical School and Harvard Pilgrim Health Care, Boston, Massachusetts 02215, USA. Elsie_Taveras@


The purpose of this study was to describe the prevalence of TVs in the bedrooms of an urban, largely racial/ethnic minority population of children and parents' reasons for putting the TV in their child's room. The authors surveyed 200 parents of children age 2 to 13 years in a primary care clinic; 57% of the children were non-Hispanic black, 33% were Hispanic. Sixty-seven percent of all children had a TV in the room where they slept; high rates of TVs were present in bedrooms of black (70%) and Hispanic (74%) children compared with white children (22%). The top 3 reasons parents cited for putting a TV in the room where their child sleeps were (a) to keep the child occupied so that the parent could do other things around the house, ( b) to help the child sleep, and (c) to free up the other TVs so that other family members could watch their shows.

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