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Identity – Body Image

One of the most important tasks of growing up is discovering who you are (identity) and learning to love yourself, including your body, mind and soul. In an advertising-saturated world many of us unknowingly absorb false messages about our identity and what we must look like, do, or own to be valuable in society. Regardless of your age or gender, therapy addressing these issues begins with acknowledgement of this dilemma while honoring the individual’s struggles and strengths, as a means to guide the journey of positive self-discovery and empowerment.

Facts about Identity – Body Image

  • Approximately 91% of women are unhappy with their bodies and resort to dieting to achieve their ideal body shape. Unfortunately, only 5% of women naturally possess the body type often portrayed by Americans in the media.
  • 58% of college-aged girls feel pressured to be a certain weight.
  • Studies show that the more reality television a young girl watches, the more likely she is to find appearance important.
  • More than 1/3 of the people who admit to “normal dieting,” will merge into pathological dieting. Roughly 1/4 of those will suffer from a partial or full-on eating disorder.
  • In a survey, more than 40% of women and about 20% of men agreed they would consider cosmetic surgery in the future. The statistics remain relatively constant across gender, age, marital status, and race.
  • 95% of people with eating disorders are between the ages of 12 and 25.
  • Only 10% of people suffering from an eating disorder will seek professional help.

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Symptoms of Anxiety Identity – Body Image

  • obsessive self scrutiny in mirrors
  • thinking disparaging comments about your body and frequent comparison of your own shape and size to other people
  • envy or a friend’s body, or just as commonly: the body of a celebrity or someone else in the media.
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