25% of Kids Consider Plastic Surgery Because of TV

Girls are looking to the media for their concepts of ideal body image.Girls are looking to the media for their concepts of ideal body image.Children may not actively view TV stars as role models, but a new study conducted by Central YMCA found that one in four kids have considered getting plastic surgery because of what they've seen on television. Recently 810 kids aged 11 to 16 were polled about going under the knife and over 50% of girls and over 33% of boys compared their bodies to the ones they saw on TV.

One in 10 boys polled saw no issue with taking steriods to become more muscular and one in eight girls said they would take diet pills or laxatives to be skinny. "Young people appear to be increasingly insecure about their appearance and body image," Rosi Prescott, chief executive of Central YMCA, told the Daily Mail. "There is a growing trend to resort to quick fixes, which are damaging to health and often unfulfilling. The root cause of this problem is the pressure on young people to conform to an unattainable and unrealistic body image ideal."
Prescott is right, and this is not just something that affects children. People are less willing to work out or diet when they could quickly achieve their desired results through cosmetic procedures. And when we are bombarded with images of celebrities and models who have undergone treatments like Botox, boob jobs, liposuction, or lip injections, that false representation is even harder for us to achieve on our own.

Another element we typically tend to overlook: the guys. "It is also interesting that what used to be seen as a problem affecting young girls has now spread to young men," Prescott told the Daily Mail. But men have become increasingly preoccupied with their appearance in recent metrosexual times. With pretty boys on teen shows like "90210" or TV stars like the Situation from "Jersey Shore" showing off his washboard abs, it's likely that boys may be seeking unrealistic ideals as well.

It's hard enough to maintain our own positive body image, so how can we teach kids about achieving a healthy and realistic appearance with so many skewed representations in the media? We'd love to hear your thoughts in the comments.

Related links:
13 Stars Who Regret Having Plastic Surgery
Teens and Plastic Surgery: Is it Ever OK?
13 Surprising Statistics About Plastic Surgery