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Childhood vanity can cause psychological problems in adult life

Childhood vanity can cause psychological problems in adult life

They are attending our offices more assiduously. They express their interests, regardless of their parents. In the background, they try to fit what they see on the covers of "health magazines", their idols of cinema and TV and the dictates of fashion. They reveal an uncommon preoccupation with body image at such a young age, and they suffer from it, even though they are perfectly adequate.

Parents are divided between envious and worried. For them, this is also a new behavior and they do not know how to deal with this tendency of their children's bodily dissatisfaction. They think their children are maturing very early and yet they avoid arguing and opposing because they already deal with the difficulty of controlling other important details of adolescence.

Girls are encouraged to wear make-up, high heels, sexy clothes and behave like adults.

What worries girls

They have long expressed their want to lose weight. In fact they suffer from very young, due to the influences of the mother, who always made diet; the impositions of the media, which exhibits thin bodies as ideal, and the demands of fashion, which decreases each year the numbering of mannequins. Girls are encouraged to wear makeup, high heels, sexy clothing and behave like adults. Recently, a controversy has involved a photo essay by Vogue magazine, which used photos of girls around the age of six, dressed in makeup and in adult poses.

The fact has spawned opposing stances around the world, but it was not able to remove magazines from the newsstands. The strength of these influences is undeniable, and parents should be aware of this, in addition to discussing the subject and positioning themselves.

In the last decades we have also seen an anticipation of the age at which the first menstruation occurs. In addition, this determined changes in the diagnostic parameters of precocity and normality for the onset of puberty in girls. The pubertal spurt and female body forms are determined by the early elevation of the female hormones. Despite the young age, they are taller, have a woman's body and are very concerned about the image.

Is there scientific evidence that leads us to believe that a "diet behavior" adopted by adolescents and children? increasing weight-related and engaged in weight-loss diets can increase the risk of eating disorders.

In Western society, 9-22% of adolescents have inadequate dietary behaviors to lose weight. These behaviors are associated with malnutrition, growth retardation and sexual maturation, and symptoms of mental disorders such as depression, anxiety, chronic fatigue, and increased risk of developing eating disorders.

What mobilizes boys

It has been every time most common we attend boys very interested in muscles and body proportions incompatible with their ages. In general, children and adolescents can not naturally develop such hypertrophic muscles with physical activity.

In boys, male hormones and growth spurts are even later in relation to what happens to girls' bodies.

In recent years there has been a growing appreciation of the male body musculature and to have an idea of ​​this change, it is enough to compare two famous figures of the cinema who lived the James Bond 007 series character: Sean Connery and Daniel Craig, as they exemplify this change in male beauty standards. The first, lean and elegant, in a suit. The second, tanned and muscled, shirtless in various scenes of the film.

The problem is that boys are longing for this very early physical type, and in order to do so, they go to clinics looking for supplements, as if it could increase muscle mass and promote the tantrums they long for.

Together with them come the parents, afflicted and insecure with the magic potions of supplements sold in gyms and specialty shops. They fear that their children will use anabolic steroids purchased underground. They expect us health professionals to persuade them not to use such substances.

Unfortunately, our arguments echo very little in the minds of these boys. They already arrive with a pattern of beauty and a illusion of health deeply rooted, fruit of this insane and cruel apology to the muscular bodies. Unfortunately supplements do not help these boys increase their muscle mass. In fact, they should not do bodybuilding until they reach age 18, where they usually stop growing.

Until then, the biggest stimulus for them to have a perfect adult male body in the future would be a balanced diet and practice sports or recreational physical activity. But often, they do not accept such a recommendation. Parents, educators, and health professionals should do their part in trying to clarify these young patients about the misconception of this early idealization.

And the dream of the perfect body continues

It is even disturbing how much body dissatisfaction among adolescents around the world. More than 25% of boys and 50% of girls wish to lose weight, including statistics of eastern people. Most striking in all of this is that 81% of them are considered to be underweight or normal weight, and 20% of them resort to inadequate methods to achieve their ideal weight goals, such as restrictive diets, weight-loss medications and the practice of self-vomiting Among the thin boys, dissatisfaction also exists and she is responsible for the increasingly precocious frequency of this group in academies and for the insistence with which they come in search of a supplement. All this to anticipate a structure that can arrive naturally with the adult age.

In any case, the childhood is shortened and the adult life is advanced. Even without the emotional framework for it.

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