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Children seem to be increasingly concerned about their physical appearance. And, more and more families are seeking psychological help for their children after observing that they feel great dissatisfaction with their body image.
Those close to children observe that the number of children overly concerned about their body image is on the rise and, in addition, it generates a high level of anxiety in children who want to comply with the beauty standards that today's society defends. Girls seem to be more concerned with their physical appearance compared to boys.
What have we done wrong so that children are concerned about their physical appearance instead of taking care of playing?
1- Media and / or social networks.
The media have a lot to do with this, they are transmitting a message that distorts what beauty really means
The images that children observe in magazines, on billboards, in music videos or on television do not correspond to "real people" but are remarkably retouched with programs that hide imperfections until they achieve an "ideal beauty".
On the other hand, on many occasions the photos that are uploaded to social networks (facebook, twitter, instagram, etc.) are not retouched but are the result of an arduous selection process in which the child has discarded hundreds of photos finally choosing the best among all of them.
Unquestionably, all of us, including children, are continually exposed to a media bombardment of perfect but unreal bodies and, therefore, unattainable. This leaves the most vulnerable people, such as children and adolescents, frustrated at not being able to reach these statuesque figures.
On other occasions, this concern for the body has its origin in the people around the child. That is, the boy or girl learns to pay attention to their physical appearance after listening to or observing in the people around them (mother, father, sister, brother, etc.) an excessive concern for body image. This causes the child to internalize this concern and begin to give excessive importance to his body image.
- She changes her clothes several times before leaving home because "nothing suits her."
- He gets in a bad mood when he has to buy or put on new clothes.
- Different parts of your body (thighs, hips, arms, etc.) are constantly measured.
- Constantly refers to the physical appearance of other people.
- He speaks disparagingly of people who do not comply with the current beauty canon using terms such as "ugly" or "fat".
- He seems to care a lot about what others say about him or her.
- You do not eat freely what you want.
- Does not behave with the naturalness and spontaneity that characterizes children.
- Spends too much time getting ready.
- Avoid activities or stop making fun plans because you feel insecure with your body.
We must help our children understand that beauty goes far beyond physical appearance. But, if we detect that our son or daughter feels excessively concerned about their body image, and we do not know how to help him to reduce his discomfort, it is recommended that we seek professional help to guide us on the best way to proceed.
The most advisable thing is that we discuss the situation with the child's pediatrician so that he or she can refer us to the relevant professional who can best help our son or daughter, being in most cases a psychologist.
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