The media, social networks, and an extensive amount of peer pressure influences how teens and adults both view themselves. The media constantly displays to individuals how their body should look and that nothing else matters but their appearance. Today, there are many organizations and campaigns whose main goal is to configure the way media identifies “perfect” as. They try to inform children, parents, and mentors how important is it to have a positive body image, and to love their body. I believe, on the other hand, that what individuals fail to recognize is the severity of having a negative body image. I believe many individuals are overlooking the bigger issue that media causes. It is not solely giving individuals self-esteem issues, but along with issues that effect them mentally, they effect physically as well as.
The pressure on women to look and behave in certain ways is heavily incorporated in our culture. It is often easy to oversee the impact that culture has on how we feel about ourselves and our bodies. Watching TV, reading magazines, newspapers, or surfing the internet it is all we see are airbrushed images of perfect bodies of women. Women and their body parts sell everything from food to cars. Images of female bodies are everywhere. According to a study by Body Image concluded that looking at magazines for just 60 minutes lowers the self-esteem of more than 80% of girls. It is astonishing to believe that girls this young are already worrying about what the perfect body shape it. Parents, mentors, and leaders of today’s society need to advise to children that many images of media are passive and only represent one dimensional physical beauty. They need to give others the motivation to have a critical eye when looking at media. Give realistic examples, like Photoshop or airbrushing, to show why they should not waste their time and energy to compare themselves to those in the media. These messages given by the media send tells “normal” women that the female body is always in need of adjustment and the female body is an object to be perfected. We fail to realize that having a lower self-esteem can be linked to depression, and the development of unhealthy eating habits in women and girls.
There are a great amount of disorders that individuals have that the media can sometimes be put at blame for. Body dysmorphia is a type of perception disorder derived from Anorexia Nervosa. When individuals look at themselves in the mirror, they actually think they look overweight, when they are not. They tend to starve themselves, over-exercise, and are very underweight. Of course we cannot put the full blame on the media for girls having this type of disorder, but some should be placed on the mentors, parents, and leaders of today. When the media displays these incredibly skinny models that are sometimes unrealistically photo shopped, individuals tend to have this mindset that because the model is in a magazine or commercial, they are socially more acceptable and accepted, and begin to become self-conscious about their own body and want to make a change. According to the National Eating Disorders Association, seventy percent of six to twelve year olds want to be thinner. With media displaying anything all over, young girls are subjected to these images and giving them the idea of what the perfect body looks like. Starting at such a young age constantly obsessing about their body and how they look physically, they will slowly begin to show signs of such life threatening eating disorders.