Television and Anxiety Among Youth Essay

Television and Anxiety Among Youth Essay

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It is a problem that we can’t ignore, anxiety among youth has been increasing at a steady rate in the last five to seven decades. Although, some people like Peter Gray, who has a Ph.D. in psychology, and is a professor at Boston College, believe that it is because the steadily decreasing free time that children have (Gray), I believe it is something totally different. First of all, I believe that Gray’s opinion doesn’t make sense because the more leisure time one has, the more time one has to think, and be anxious. Either way, I think the real reason for this epidemic is the incredibly materialistic society we are becoming, and this can be traced to television, and the media. Whether children want to wear what their favorite singer is wearing, or they want to repeat a crime they saw somebody get 15 minutes of fame for, it is the media, and the singling out of certain people that is making them behave the way they do. With technology advancing the way it has over the years, it only makes sense that the influence it has on immature minds is advancing as well. This may be what is behind what older people call “millennials,” and if it is, we are in for a treat, because the next generation is going to be a whole lot worse.
How bad is the anxiety? Well for starters, according to Peter Gray, students are five to eight times as likely to develop an anxiety disorder nowadays compared to a few score years ago. Some people might question if the criteria was held constant, but Gray assures that it has remained unchanged. A study from San Diego State University, originally used to diagnose college students for certain mental disorders, also points to an increased rate of anxiety. Gray goes on to address how important this problem is by saying...


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...e Causes, Consequences, and Solutions for Academic Anxiety. New York: Peter Lang Publishing Inc., 2010. Print.
Comer, Jonathan S., et al. "Media Use And Children's Perceptions Of Societal Threat And Personal Vulnerability." Journal Of Clinical Child And Adolescent Psychology 37.3 (2008): 622-630. PsycINFO. Web. 1 Apr. 2014.
Gray, Peter. “The Decline of Play and Rise of Children’s Mental Disorders.” Psychology Today. Peter Gray, 26 Jan. 2010. Web. 1 Apr. 2014.
Heerey, Erin A., and Ann M. Kring. "Interpersonal Consequences Of Social Anxiety." Journal Of Abnormal Psychology 116.1 (2007): 125-134. PsycINFO. Web. 2 Apr. 2014.
Krosnick, Jon A., Sowmya Narayan Anand, and Scott P. Hartl. "Psychosocial Predictors Of Heavy Television Viewing Among Preadolescents And Adolescents." Basic And Applied Social Psychology 25.2 (2003): 87-110. PsycINFO. Web. 1 Apr. 2014.

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