A recent report from Girlguiding UK reveals that almost 50%of girls between the ages of 16 and 21 would consider having surgery to change the way they look. The findings indicate that more than one in ten girls between the ages of 11 and 16 would undergo gastric band or cosmetic surgery so that they could feel better about themselves, and researchers found a strong correlation between girls’ school achievement and their attitude toward their bodies.
According to the study, 43 percent of girls attending a secondary school whose performance was either good or outstanding would not consider plastic surgery, but a high percentage of girls who were getting satisfactory or poor grades would consider it.
Other research findings show that many young girls – especially those in the 11 to 16 year old age range – were simply not happy with their appearance, and that their self-esteem appeared to drop significantly during their teenage years. Some of the most common concerns about appearance of these young girls was to alter their teeth, improve their skin or hair, or make themselves thinner. Body shape was among the most important concerns for girls in this category, which is why gastric banding and other types of cosmetic surgery were considered to be a top priority for these young women.
The Girlguiding UK report concludes that, “Few girls up to the age of 16 consider using surgical methods to change their appearance, but once that becomes a genuine option at the age of 18, cosmetic surgery far outstrips all others as their procedure of choice…girls aged 16-21 demonstrate a high level of self-awareness when it comes to risky behaviors.” Even though many of these girls deal with issues surrounding alcohol, eating disorders and irresponsible sexual behavior, they are also often tackling issues surrounding their appearance and body image.
The full report from Girlsguiding UK can be found here.