This study examined the extent to which exposure to direct-to-consumer (DTC) antidepressant ads is associated with young adults' understanding of depression as a medical condition. A vignette-based questionnaire was presented to 285 college students. Among those who had not experienced depressive symptoms, high exposure to a DTC antidepressant commercial was significantly associated with recognition of depression cases and listing antidepressants as a treatment option. As their exposure to the DTC ad increased, respondents also demonstrated a more positive evaluation of antidepressant treatment. Such effects were not found, however, for those who had experienced depressive symptoms.
- Direct-to-consumer advertising
- Young adults