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Pediatricians Want to Restrict Ads for Tobacco, Booze, Viagra
Date:9/27/2010

the statement include:

  • Limit advertising and product placement for alcohol in venues where more than 10 percent of the audience are children. Alcohol use in teens shouldn't be portrayed as normal in movies or TV shows, and no one should be shown as being "funny-drunk."
  • The White House Office on Drug Control Policy should conduct anti-smoking and anti-teen-drinking public service campaigns.
  • Drug companies, public health groups and the medical communities should have an open debate on the necessity of advertising prescription drugs.
  • Ads for erectile dysfunction drugs should only be shown after 10 p.m., and they shouldn't be overly suggestive.
  • Schools should try to incorporate media education into their curricula.
  • Parents should limit unsupervised media use.

"Alcohol remains the greatest public health problem, and it remains the most lethal drug for young people. Parents need to understand this, and protect their children," said Dr. John R. Knight, director of the Center for Adolescent Substance Abuse Research at Children's Hospital of Boston. "Advertising glamorizes alcohol and really primes our kids to think they can't have fun unless there's booze."

Knight said prescription drug ads contribute to the idea that these drugs are safe for anyone to take and lead to greater prescription drug abuse in teens.

Of the new policy statement, Knight said he's "proud of the AAP" for taking a stand.

Lori Evans, a psychologist at the New York University Child Study Center, agreed that the AAP recommendations are important. "We know the impact of advertising. That's why advertisers spend money on it. For kids, the images are so vivid and clear that it's a good thing to limit access."

But, she added, "No matter how much we limit access, we still have to watch with our children because we need to know what they're seeing and hearing." For example, she said, if you're watching a foot
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