Body image, affecting teens negatively more than it does positively

Antoinette Huizar-Chavez, Angelita Bautista, and Leah Ramirez

Ana Amaya and Damoni Deans

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Although there is a such thing as a positive body image, many teens suffer emotionally and physically due to the negative body image that roams adolescence.

Regardless of gender, body image contributes to body modifications, emotional disorders, behavior disorders, and the increasing suicide rate.

Many people define body image differently, but it is usually defined as the way one physically sees themselves or how one envisions themselves  to look. According to Planned Parenthood, everyone has a body image and it can mean being strong, being in control, or feeling attractive. Planned Parenthood also defines a positive body image and a negative body image. A positive body image consists of one’s personal acceptance and comfortableness. A negative body image is opposite of that and usually affects health and well-being. There are many ways to change and overcome negative body image.

Because many adolescents do not seek for the help they need to accept who they are, many resort to unhealthy habits. 95% of people with eating disorders are between the ages of 12 and 25, states Do Something.  And out of those 95%, only 10% will seek for professional help. Eating disorders are divided into three categories and are more frequent in women than they are in men. Eating disorders are not the only unhealthy habits that adolescents resort to. Male teens resort to steroids, female teens resort to dietary pills, and both alike resort to suicidal thoughts. According to the CFAH, researchers found that suicidal thoughts were higher in those who thought they were overweight. The research also found that the effect was stronger on girls than it was on boys. Depression along with other behavioral disorders plague adolescents with a negative body image.

Despite the cliché about body image, male teens and female teens are both affected by the same influences.

As stated by Planned Parenthood, culture, friends, parents, and social media, etc. are some of the many factors that contribute to body image. But as many have said, it is what you make it. If the adolescent seeks help and accepts who they are, they will be able overcome a negative body image.


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