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Effect of aggressive voices on TV on baby

User Thread
 47yrs • M •
jonnytekno is new to Captain Cynic and has less than 15 posts. New members have certain restrictions and must fill in CAPTCHAs to use various parts of the site.
Effect of aggressive voices on TV on baby
I have a 3 week old baby and am about to go back to work after paternity leave. I am having an ongoing argument with my wife about something and want to know if there are any expert studies to support my hypothesis, or just anyone elses general opinion.

Once I am back at work she will be sitting in the living room with him watching TV; she watches Jeremy Kyle! If anyone doesn't know what this is it is like Jerry Springer with very trashy people shouting at each other. I am convinced that the baby being exposed to all these aggressive voices cannot be good. She thinks I am being stupid and will not agree to not watch it.

I need some kind of evidence or study to support my case.

Obviously I might be wrong and might really be being stupid, which I will accept happily as well - or perhaps it will be a certain age when we need to start worrying.

Any help much appreciated.

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 41yrs • F •
Hi jonnytekno, I am not an expert but I used to teach children and I had an interest in learning about the effects of music/sound on children, so I have my own opinions that are in tune with your beliefs. I definitely think that aggressive voices/sounds will be detrimental to a young child, especially a baby.

I did a few quick searches on google and found a few interesting things that give weight to your argument:

There was a study that demonstrated that new born babies preferred the music they were exposed to from the womb - for up to a year after they are born. This means that babies, from an extremely early stage develop memory associated to sounds that they hear. (http://www.edu-cyberpg.com/literacy/whatresearchwomb.asp)

Another study looked at whether or not loud noises/noise pollution in neonatal intensive care unit's affected babies and if the distress caused was related to hypoxemia (oxygen deficiency). The abstract I read said "The AAP Committee on Environmental Hazards3 has recommended that physicians and hospital personnel be alert to and eliminate unnecessary noise in nurseries." (http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/65/1/143.short)

Whilst these two studies don't focus directly on aggressive voices, they do strongly suggest that sound does have a significant affect on babies. So if your child is being exposed to harsh, unsettling/violent, aural stimulus it will likely have an impact on him/her. I think it's possible that your baby could feel stressed out and anxious, which could cause physical side effects such as apnea, elevated blood pressure or restlessness. I also think that it's possible that the aggressive voices could effect you babies behavioral development - the human brain and psyche is so delicate, especially when so young. Children and babies especially are like little sponges that absorb information and retain imprints of the environment around them.

I hope this helps - maybe talk to your wife about the fact that there are studies out there which show that sound/what a baby hears does have a strong effect on them. Perhaps buy your wife some wireless TV headphones so that she can still watch her show - but this way you baby won't have to hear it. You can buy it cheaply for about $13 from Ebay.

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"Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail."
 37yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that parallelist is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
My memory is hazy so some of this may be incorrect:

There was a study done where children in group A watched some footage of another child punching an inflatable wobble doll and generally playing aggressively with it and children in group B watched footage of the same child only this same playing with the wobble doll gently. (Each child watched this footage alone so the process was repeated many times for the full sample of children.)

After watching the footage of either the gentle or aggressive play the children were allowed to go play in a room where the exact same wobble doll was present. Sure enough a significant percentage of children in group A would immediately start punching the wobble doll while it almost never occurred to the children in group B to do the same.

I think the interpretation of these findings was not so specific that watching aggressive things makes you aggressive or that the medium (in this case a television) is significant but just that children like to copy whatever they see just to see what it feels like. How this translates to form habitual behavior or personality is the subject of other studies.

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Effect of aggressive voices on TV on baby
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