Sexual media and childhood well-being and health

Rebecca L. Collins, Victor C. Strasburger, Jane D. Brown, Edward I Donnerstein, Amanda Lenhart, L. Monique Ward

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Sexual content is highly prevalent in traditional media, and portrayals rarely depict the responsibilities and risks (eg, condom use, pregnancy) associated with sexual activity. Exposure to such content is linked with shifts in attitudes about sex and gender, earlier progression to sexual activity, pregnancy, and sexually transmitted infection among adolescents. However, little information is available about moderators and mediators of these effects. We also know little about digital media, their sex-related content, and their potential influence on youth. Data from a few studies of older youth indicate that sexual displays on social media sites are related to problematic beliefs and behaviors among those who post this content and among viewers. Online pornography appears to be more problematic for youth than off-line sources. Given the vast and increasing amount of time youth spend online and their developmental openness to influence, more research attention to digital sexual media is needed. Those who undertake this work should identify potential negative consequences of use and opportunities to improve adolescent sexual health through digital media. Studies of on- and off-line media in which researchers examine younger media audiences, identify processes explaining sexual media effects on behavior, and moderators of effects are needed. Such studies could be used to inform interventions to reduce negative outcomes and increase positive media effects. Policy makers should stimulate the development of such interventions, including tools to help parents identify and manage negative media influences on their children's sexual well-being and development and dissemination of innovative media literacy programs related to sexual health.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)S162-S166
JournalPediatrics
Volume140
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2017

Fingerprint

Health
Reproductive Health
Sexual Behavior
Erotica
Social Media
Pregnancy
Condoms
Sexually Transmitted Diseases
Administrative Personnel
Child Welfare
Parents
Research Personnel
Education
Research
Adolescent Health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health

Cite this

Collins, R. L., Strasburger, V. C., Brown, J. D., Donnerstein, E. I., Lenhart, A., & Ward, L. M. (2017). Sexual media and childhood well-being and health. Pediatrics, 140, S162-S166. https://doi.org/10.1542/peds.2016-1758X

Sexual media and childhood well-being and health. / Collins, Rebecca L.; Strasburger, Victor C.; Brown, Jane D.; Donnerstein, Edward I; Lenhart, Amanda; Ward, L. Monique.

In: Pediatrics, Vol. 140, 01.11.2017, p. S162-S166.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Collins, RL, Strasburger, VC, Brown, JD, Donnerstein, EI, Lenhart, A & Ward, LM 2017, 'Sexual media and childhood well-being and health', Pediatrics, vol. 140, pp. S162-S166. https://doi.org/10.1542/peds.2016-1758X
Collins RL, Strasburger VC, Brown JD, Donnerstein EI, Lenhart A, Ward LM. Sexual media and childhood well-being and health. Pediatrics. 2017 Nov 1;140:S162-S166. https://doi.org/10.1542/peds.2016-1758X
Collins, Rebecca L. ; Strasburger, Victor C. ; Brown, Jane D. ; Donnerstein, Edward I ; Lenhart, Amanda ; Ward, L. Monique. / Sexual media and childhood well-being and health. In: Pediatrics. 2017 ; Vol. 140. pp. S162-S166.
@article{571a197f1e6646f4b8e2a21199d7040d,
title = "Sexual media and childhood well-being and health",
abstract = "Sexual content is highly prevalent in traditional media, and portrayals rarely depict the responsibilities and risks (eg, condom use, pregnancy) associated with sexual activity. Exposure to such content is linked with shifts in attitudes about sex and gender, earlier progression to sexual activity, pregnancy, and sexually transmitted infection among adolescents. However, little information is available about moderators and mediators of these effects. We also know little about digital media, their sex-related content, and their potential influence on youth. Data from a few studies of older youth indicate that sexual displays on social media sites are related to problematic beliefs and behaviors among those who post this content and among viewers. Online pornography appears to be more problematic for youth than off-line sources. Given the vast and increasing amount of time youth spend online and their developmental openness to influence, more research attention to digital sexual media is needed. Those who undertake this work should identify potential negative consequences of use and opportunities to improve adolescent sexual health through digital media. Studies of on- and off-line media in which researchers examine younger media audiences, identify processes explaining sexual media effects on behavior, and moderators of effects are needed. Such studies could be used to inform interventions to reduce negative outcomes and increase positive media effects. Policy makers should stimulate the development of such interventions, including tools to help parents identify and manage negative media influences on their children's sexual well-being and development and dissemination of innovative media literacy programs related to sexual health.",
author = "Collins, {Rebecca L.} and Strasburger, {Victor C.} and Brown, {Jane D.} and Donnerstein, {Edward I} and Amanda Lenhart and Ward, {L. Monique}",
year = "2017",
month = "11",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1542/peds.2016-1758X",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "140",
pages = "S162--S166",
journal = "Pediatrics",
issn = "0031-4005",
publisher = "American Academy of Pediatrics",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Sexual media and childhood well-being and health

AU - Collins, Rebecca L.

AU - Strasburger, Victor C.

AU - Brown, Jane D.

AU - Donnerstein, Edward I

AU - Lenhart, Amanda

AU - Ward, L. Monique

PY - 2017/11/1

Y1 - 2017/11/1

N2 - Sexual content is highly prevalent in traditional media, and portrayals rarely depict the responsibilities and risks (eg, condom use, pregnancy) associated with sexual activity. Exposure to such content is linked with shifts in attitudes about sex and gender, earlier progression to sexual activity, pregnancy, and sexually transmitted infection among adolescents. However, little information is available about moderators and mediators of these effects. We also know little about digital media, their sex-related content, and their potential influence on youth. Data from a few studies of older youth indicate that sexual displays on social media sites are related to problematic beliefs and behaviors among those who post this content and among viewers. Online pornography appears to be more problematic for youth than off-line sources. Given the vast and increasing amount of time youth spend online and their developmental openness to influence, more research attention to digital sexual media is needed. Those who undertake this work should identify potential negative consequences of use and opportunities to improve adolescent sexual health through digital media. Studies of on- and off-line media in which researchers examine younger media audiences, identify processes explaining sexual media effects on behavior, and moderators of effects are needed. Such studies could be used to inform interventions to reduce negative outcomes and increase positive media effects. Policy makers should stimulate the development of such interventions, including tools to help parents identify and manage negative media influences on their children's sexual well-being and development and dissemination of innovative media literacy programs related to sexual health.

AB - Sexual content is highly prevalent in traditional media, and portrayals rarely depict the responsibilities and risks (eg, condom use, pregnancy) associated with sexual activity. Exposure to such content is linked with shifts in attitudes about sex and gender, earlier progression to sexual activity, pregnancy, and sexually transmitted infection among adolescents. However, little information is available about moderators and mediators of these effects. We also know little about digital media, their sex-related content, and their potential influence on youth. Data from a few studies of older youth indicate that sexual displays on social media sites are related to problematic beliefs and behaviors among those who post this content and among viewers. Online pornography appears to be more problematic for youth than off-line sources. Given the vast and increasing amount of time youth spend online and their developmental openness to influence, more research attention to digital sexual media is needed. Those who undertake this work should identify potential negative consequences of use and opportunities to improve adolescent sexual health through digital media. Studies of on- and off-line media in which researchers examine younger media audiences, identify processes explaining sexual media effects on behavior, and moderators of effects are needed. Such studies could be used to inform interventions to reduce negative outcomes and increase positive media effects. Policy makers should stimulate the development of such interventions, including tools to help parents identify and manage negative media influences on their children's sexual well-being and development and dissemination of innovative media literacy programs related to sexual health.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85033583429&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=85033583429&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1542/peds.2016-1758X

DO - 10.1542/peds.2016-1758X

M3 - Article

VL - 140

SP - S162-S166

JO - Pediatrics

JF - Pediatrics

SN - 0031-4005

ER -