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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Movies Influence Teen Drinking

Movies are the most popular medium of art amongst teenagers; it makes sense to think that what they see in movies will influence their actions in many cases, which isn’t necessarily a good thing. Alcohol use is often featured in movies and according to a new report may double the likelihood that teens will start drinking alcohol.

The study was over the course of two-years and more than 6,500 American kids, ages 10 to 14 were involved. Researchers found that teens who saw movies with heavy alcohol consumption were more likely to engage in binge drinking (five or more drinks in a row) HealthDay reports.

Teens who started drinking alcohol more than doubled from 11 percent to 25 percent, and those who started binge drinking tripled from 4 percent to 13 percent.

Among teens who were exposed to movies that feature alcohol use led to:
  • 28 percent of kids drinking alcohol
  • Of those, 20 percent started binge drinking

“Product placement in movies is forbidden for cigarettes in the U.S.A., but is legal and commonplace for the alcohol industry, with half of Hollywood films containing at least one alcohol-brand appearance, regardless of film rating,” James Sargent, of Norris Cotton Cancer Center, Dartmouth Medical School and colleagues wrote in the report.

The study was published in the journal BMJ Open

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