Author(s): ByrdBredbenner C, Grasso D
The potential effects of television advertisements on knowledge, attitudes, and behavior have generated considerable concern. Part of this concern arises from the overall exposure of children to this medium. By the time they graduate from high school, the time devoted to watching television will exceed the hours spent in school. Hence, health professionals should recognize the disproportionate role of television as an informational and attitudinal source for children. The potential impact of television advertisements, particularly those promoting health-related products such as medications and foods, coupled with the changing nature of television points to this medium as an important candidate for examination. The purpose of this study was to content analyze and compare advertisements broadcast in 1992 and 1998 to create a description of the health information conveyed in top-rated, prime time network television advertisements and to determine the congruence of this information with current health recommendations.