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SOCIAL MEDIA’S INFLUENCE ON BODY IMAGESocial Media’s Influence on Adolescent and Young Adult Women’s Body ImageZohaa Y. AwanCapella UniversityPSY5002: Foundations of Theory and Practices for Master’s Psychology LearnersLiterature ReviewOctober 22, 20221
SOCIAL MEDIA’S INFLUENCE ON BODY IMAGEAbstractSocial media seems to have quite an influence on the body image perception of adolescent andyoung adult women. With social media apps expanding their following, girls between the ages of13-25 are getting more and more indulged in its content. This content includes unrealistic bodystandards, unhealthy weight loss tips, and other posts that could be considered triggering. Awoman’s body image perception could be negatively impacted due to such content. This negativeperception could lead to women feeling self-conscious about themselves and so they edit theirpictures before posting them on social media. When comparing one’s own body to the editedversion or other general posted bodies, insecurities arise, and disordered eating habits may occur.As a future clinical psychologist, the literature, as well as my personal experience in this realm,should be able to help me work with adolescent and young adult women who struggle withsimilar issues.2
REPLACE WITH SHORT TITLESocial Media’s Influence on Adolescent and Young Adult Women’s Body ImageA young woman’s body goes through many changes between the ages of 13 and 25,which coincidentally is also relatively the modern age range that is engulfed in social media appssuch as TikTok, Snapchat, and Instagram (Auxier & Anderson, 2022). Due to the Covid-19pandemic, social media usage in general increased to about 70% more than pre-Covid times(Zanner, 2022). Although these apps are a great way to stay connected with people from acrossthe world, especially during a pandemic, social media has also had quite a negative impact onadolescent and young adult women’s mental health.During and post-Covid times, girls of these ages have been exposed to a variety ofinfluential social media content related to self-esteem and body image. This content wouldinclude unrealistic body standards, photoshopping and editing one’s facial and body features, andhacks on losing weight in an unhealthy manner which would lead to undiagnosed eatingdisorders. As a 22-year-old woman, my social media feed was full of this type of content, and Ihad fallen victim to comparing my own body to those I would see online. Social media had adetrimental influence on my body image perception which led me to become underweight, yetstill unfulfilled. Reading through the literature, I realized that I was not the only one whostruggled with body image issues due to social media; I and many other women around my agetook the risky advice from these apps and applied them to our reality. I know that this is acommon problem amongst my target population of future clientele, so my research questionintegrates this by asking: How does social media influence adolescent and young adult women’sperception of their body image?

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