Objective. We sought to determine if the number of hours elementary school students viewed television (TV) and video games is associated with substance use. Methods. We distributed the California Healthy Kids Survey Elementary School Questionnaire to elementary schools in Kentucky in 2006. A total of 4,691 students, primarily fourth and fifth graders, completed the survey. The students provided responses to questions on topics such as drug use, alcohol use, TV and video game viewing time, and their home life. We analyzed the survey using Chi-square tests and logistic regression. Results. Approximately one-third of respondents indicated substance use, which was defined as alcohol use, illegal drug use, smoking/tobacco use, or sniffing solvents. Significantly more children (28% of those watching ≥3 hours of TV/video games compared with 20% of those watching greater than zero but ≤2 hours of TV/video games) reported alcohol use (p<0.05). Similar results were seen for sniffing solvents, with 9% of those watching ≥3 hours of TV/ video games reporting they sniffed solvents compared with 4% who watched TV/video games for greater than zero but ≤2 hours (p<0.05). The results of the logistic regression indicated that the odds of drinking alcohol (odds ratio [OR] = 1.48, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.23, 1.79) and sniffing solvents (OR=1.97, 95% CI 1.42, 2.75) were significantly higher for those watching ≥3 hours of TV/video games compared with those who watched TV/video games for greater than zero but ≤2 hours. Conclusions. The hours of TV and video games viewed were associated with alcohol use and sniffing solvents for our sample. However, limitations exist due to the inability to separate TV viewing from video game viewing.
|Number of pages||8|
|Journal||Public Health Reports|
|State||Published - 2010|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health