USA Today (12/10, Jayson) reports that, according to a study published online Dec. 9 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, “six or more hours a day of exposure to media coverage” following “a traumatic event may” be harmful to mental health. Researchers found that prolonged media exposure following the April 15 Boston Marathon bombings was tied to “more acute stress than having been at or near the marathon.”
The Los Angeles Times (12/10, Healy) reports that researchers arrived at that conclusion after questioning some 4,675 Americans in the period two to four weeks after the bombings. People who took the Internet-based survey “were a representative sample of metropolitan Boston, New York City and the rest of the United States.” After adjusting for confounding factors, investigators “found that respondents with a prior history of mental health problems and those who had watched six or more hours of daily media coverage of the events surrounding the bombings were most likely to report high acute-stress symptoms.”
— “Acute stress trauma can result from exposure via media, “Sharon Jayson, USA Today, December 09, 2013.