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There are different stages of human growth and development from conception, birth, early childhood stage, adolescence all the way until a person passes on. It is however during the adolescence stage that the human body experiences extreme physical, emotional and biological changes and most of these changes remain permanent. During adolescence, boys and girls experience different physical, emotional and biological changes and in most cases it is advisable for them to be advised and motivated as they go through this delicate stage. Most focus should be given to those adolescent who develop disorders like eating, sleeping and physical disorders. The purpose of this paper will be to focus on eating disorders that adolescents go through and the paper will look at the role of the media and how it has contributed to eating disorders in adolescents. It will also look at other components that have contributed to eating disorders. Another question that the paper will answer is why is there a rise in eating disorder yet a concomitant rise in obesity? Finally, the paper will give an option as to where this (eating disorder) is an exclusive problem of young female adolescents and why is there a rise in young males with eating disorders. Before answering the above questions, the paper will start off by looking at the different changes that adolescents (both boys and girls) go through and it will close by giving a brief summation of the important points that were mentioned in the paper.
Physical Changes in Adolescence
During this stage, both boys and girls must go through noticeable biological and physical changes. According to 4parents, the main similarity in the physical changes in boys and girls during puberty is the increase in height and weight (4parents, 2009). Boys develop broad shoulders, increase in height, weight and a more defined physique. In girls, the most "outstanding" physical change is that their hips and waist line of girls icrease during this stage as well as height and weight. Another physical change is the growth of breast, in boys it's their reproductive organs. The last notable physical change in boys during puberty is the deepening of voice and also in some boys they develop "small breasts" but which disappears once they are out of puberty (4parents, 2009).
Adolescents and Eating Disorders
As most adolescent experience physical changes as mentioned in the chapter above; increase in height and weight, most of them develop eating disorders. Whereas some of them have an increase in appetite in order to "add" weight, there are those who opt to cut down on their eating especially girls in order lose weight and look sexy and attractive. This is where the influence of the media is greatly witnessed. According to Werner-Wilson et al, the highest number of persons who use the print, audio and visual media are the adolescents. This is because of the nature of content being aired and printed (Werner-Wilson, 2004).
The question therefore is how does this contribute to eating disorders? The entertainment industry is one of the industries that generate thousands of dollars in form of revenue for both the government as well as individuals, therefore for most ladies who want to make it they must have a certain body shape and figure. For most adolescent girls who want to join the entertainment sector, more specifically modeling, they are forced to slim so as to appear thinner, slimmer and attractive. This is how they unknowingly develop an eating disorder. They however refer this to as dieting. For the boys, the desire to appear well built and sexy forces them to eat more than they can handle (Blackwell, 2010). This is another form of eating disorder that can be blamed on the media.
The rapid growth and development of the internet and social sites and its impact on adolescents cannot be underestimated. This is because most adolescent wwant to appear as their role models most of whom they see their pictures on the internet. It is therefore wise to conclude that the internet has greatly contributed to adolescents developing eating disorders.
As indicated in the previous part of this paper, the influence of the media is one reason as to why adolescents develop eating disorders. Whereas some adolescents especially girls "deny" themselves food in order to shed weight and look sexy, other over eat and in the end they become overweight and become obsessed. It is for this reason that there is a rise in eating disorders and at the same time a concomitant rise in obesity.
There are different types of eating disorders that adolescent boys and girls engage in, for example binge eating and bulimia nervosa. It is therefore important to say that eating disorder does not affect girls alone but boys as well. The reason for this as indicated in this paper is that most girls slim in order to fit in the entertainment circles while for boys they desire to have well build physique. Apart from the desire by both sexes of adolescents to be absorbed in entertainment worlds, depressions and frustrations are some reasons that make adolescents develop eating disorders. For instance when girls undergo physical changes there are some that dislike how their bodies are changing and as a result they develop this disorders, the same case applies to boys.
In conclusion, these essay paper has discussed the physical changes that boys and girls go through during adolescents. The paper has then gone ahead and discussed the role of the media and how it has contributed to rise of eating disorders among adolescent and reason as to why. Other causes to eating disorders have also been mentioned in the paper as the different types of eating disorders. Parents and guardians therefore have a responsibility to guide their children during adolescents to ensure that they don't develop this kind of disorder that might affect their health in future.