A Cross-sectional Study on Body Image Perception and Self-Esteem among Adolescent Girls in Urban and Rural Areas of Kolkata, West Bengal, India
Dr. Malvika Dwivedi,
Assistant Professor, Department of Community Medicine, Government Housing Estate, 44 Ironside Road, Ballygunge Park, Kolkata-700019, West Bengal, India.
Introduction: Adolescence is one of the most important and crucial phases of learning and individual development. Adolescents are particularly vulnerable due to the physiological, social, and psychological changes they undergo. Understanding the factors responsible for the development of body image perception and self-esteem is crucial for adolescent health and well-being.
Aim: To estimate the prevalence of body image dissatisfaction among urban and rural girls and its impact on self-esteem.
Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted in two Government schools located in urban and rural areas of Calcutta National Medical College, Kolkata, West Bengal, India. The sample size of the study was 397, with 206 girls from urban areas and 191 girls from rural areas. The Rosenberg Self-esteem Scale was used to measure self-esteem. The Stunkard Silhouettes Figure Rating Scale (FRS) was used to measure adolescents’ body image dissatisfaction. The height and weight of the participants were measured, and Body Mass Index (BMI) was calculated. Data was compiled, presented in tabular form, and analysed using Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) version 23.0.
Results: A total of 206 (51.89%) study subjects in the present study resided in urban areas, with a mean age of 15±3.32 years. Among the study population, 242 adolescent girls (60.95%) were dissatisfied with their body image. Body image dissatisfaction was higher among urban girls (57.85%) compared to adolescent girls in rural areas. A significant association between self-esteem and body image perception was found. Among the girls in the study population, 126 (52.1%) were both dissatisfied with their body image and had low self-esteem.
Conclusion: The present study shows that the majority of adolescent females were dissatisfied with their body image, and a significant association between low self-esteem and body image perception was established.