Navigation Links
Reality TV, cosmetic surgey linked, says Rutgers-Camden researcher
Date:7/30/2010

CAMDEN Teenage years have long been linked with a heightened concern with appearance. Some reality TV shows take full advantage and tout happiness as just a nip/tuck away. A RutgersCamden psychologist has found that teens fond of these kinds of programs are more likely to join the millions who go under the knife each year. For bodies - and minds - still in development, these drastic decisions could have implications way after prom.

Charlotte Markey, an associate professor of psychology at RutgersCamden, with husband Patrick Markey of Villanova University, recently published research on this topic in the academic journal Body Image.

"When we think of cosmetic surgery, we don't think of it as a lifetime issue. There is lots of pressure to look a certain way and I don't blame them for succumbing; we're all guilty of feeling vulnerable. But what young men and women think of their bodies now will culminate over time and contribute to their overall health," notes the RutgersCamden psychologist. "What troubles me is that there's no conclusive data that cosmetic surgery even makes people happier, what has been documented is that it makes repeat customers."

The wife-and-husband team surveyed nearly 200 participants with an average age of 20 on their immediate responses to an 'extreme makeover' program or a show on home improvement incorporated specifically to mask the intent of the study. Both men and women were included in the study and the procedures examined were ones either gender could pursue.

As the RutgersCamden researcher suspected, women were more likely to want cosmetic surgery than men and viewers of the cosmetic surgery show were more inclined to consider the procedure for themselves than those who didn't tune in. What still shocks Markey are the handwritten responses to the cosmetic surgery show, including comments like "inspirational" and "I saw an unhappy girl get her dreams."

This saddens Markey because outward appearance seems to be the sole avenue to self satisfaction and this road, she believes, is circular. "If plastic surgery makes you feel better about yourself, then why do you keep getting it done?" she asks. "This mindset is very similar to that of an anorexic wanting to lose just five more pounds."

While ABC's Extreme Makeover, which led to the Extreme Makeover-Home Edition, was cancelled in 2007, it sparked the development of several other similarly themed shows like Fox's The Swan, the drama Nip/Tuck, MTV's I Want a Famous Face, E's Dr. 90210 and Oxygen's recent Addicted to Beauty. The impact of reality television as a new media influence regardless of topic also raises many questions about what is being portrayed to viewers as real and indicative of everyday life.

"There is a cultural context to never be satisfied with our physical selves. It's the rare person who is either completely oblivious or has developed such a strong counter message to not be affected, "notes Markey, the mother of a four-year-old boy and a three-year-old girl. "We need to teach children to be critical of the messages we're receiving and tell them positive things now to foster self-esteem."

Markey brings these cultural dialogues into her own home by explaining to her young children why Barbie is banned. "I tell them 'no one you will ever meet in real life will ever look like her'" she says. "There are so many messages out there telling us that we need to fix ourselves, but at an early age we need to tell our kids: 'I love you just the way you are.'"

She teaches the courses Psychology of Eating; Health Psychology; Psychology of Health and Happiness; Psychology of Adolescence; and Research Methods at RutgersCamden.


'/>"/>

Contact: Cathy Donovan
catkarm@camden.rutgers.edu
856-225-6627
Rutgers University
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Making virtopsies a reality
2. Mercy Ships Releases Abel Dalome Just in Time for Father's Day - A Father's Dream Becomes a Reality
3. Now with Augmented Reality, Life Compass, by Fortune Compass, is the most complete Feng Shui App in Apple's iTunes store!
4. Mysterious ball lightning: Illusion or reality?
5. The Reality of Sex Addiction Stirs Debate
6. Artificial Legs Now a Reality for Pets
7. R&B Recording Artist / King of Hancock Park Norwood Young Set to Launch Reality Documentary and Autobiography
8. Reality Cares Radio Hour Announces May “Band From TV” Month
9. Artificial Pancreas for Type 1 Diabetes Moves Closer to Reality
10. New cancer drug screening technique more closely mirrors reality
11. Mind Reading Moves Closer to Reality
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... , ... Austin residents seeking Mohs surgery services, can now turn to Dr. ... Russell Peckham for medical and surgical dermatology. , Dr. Dorsey brings specialization to include ... in Mohs Micrographic Surgery completed by Dr. Dorsey was under the direction of Glenn ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... Dr. Calvin Johnson has ... he has implemented orthobiologic procedures as a method for treating his patients. The ... first doctors to perform the treatment. Orthobiologics are substances that orthopaedic surgeons use ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... June 19, 2016 is World Sickle ... chronic pain and the benefits of holistic treatments, Serenity Recovery Center of ... Sickle Cell Disease. , Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) is a disorder of the red ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Comfort Keepers® of San Diego, CA is excited ... To Recovery® program to drive cancer patients to and from their cancer treatments. ... highest quality of life and ongoing independence. Getting to and from medical treatments ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Puradigm® & Innovative Solutions today ... cultivation and processing operations at its production facility, and opened its first two ... the manufacturer of a complete system of proactive air and surface purification solutions ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... Research and Markets has ... 2015-2025: Applications, Technologies, Forecasts" report to their ... Electronics, Smart Skin, Structural Health Monitoring, Composite Smart ... electronics involves electronic and/or electrical components and circuits ... structures such as vehicle bodies or conformally placed ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... and SAN CLEMENTE, Calif. , June 24, ... -based mobile pulmonary function testing company, is now able to perform ... developed by ndd Medical Technologies , Inc. ... in hospital-based labs.  Thanks to ndd,s EasyOne PRO ® , ARL ... can get any needed testing done in the comfort of her ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... 2016   Pulmatrix, Inc ., (NASDAQ: ... drugs, announced today that it was added to the ... its comprehensive set of U.S. and global equity indexes ... important milestone for Pulmatrix," said Chief Executive Officer ... our progress in developing drugs for crucial unmet medical ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: