Clinically signifcant body dissatisfaction : Prevalence and association with depressive symptoms in adolescent boys and girls

Journal article


McLean, Siân A., Rodgers, Rachel F., Slater, Amy, Jarman, Hannah K., Gordon, Chloe S. and Paxton, Susan J.. (2021). Clinically signifcant body dissatisfaction : Prevalence and association with depressive symptoms in adolescent boys and girls. European Child and Adolescent Psychiatry: official journal of the European Society for Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00787-021-01824-4
AuthorsMcLean, Siân A., Rodgers, Rachel F., Slater, Amy, Jarman, Hannah K., Gordon, Chloe S. and Paxton, Susan J.
Abstract

Body dissatisfaction is distressing and a risk factor for adverse consequences including eating disorders. However, data pertaining to the prevalence of body dissatisfaction in adolescence, a key period for its emergence, are lacking. This is a substantial barrier to tailored assessment and early intervention. This study addresses this gap and provides the prevalence of body dissatisfaction and associations with depressive symptoms and body change strategies. Adolescent boys (n = 367; Mage = 12.8, SD = 0.7) and girls (n = 368; Mage = 12.7, SD = 0.7) completed measures of body dissatisfaction and depressive symptoms with established cut-off levels. They also completed measures of dietary restraint and strategies to increase muscle size. Of boys and girls, 37.9% and 20.7%, respectively experienced moderate, and 6.8% and 19.6% experienced clinically significant body dissatisfaction, with higher rates among girls than boys and among adolescents aged 13 and 14 than aged 12. More than one-quarter of boys (26.70%) and one-third of girls (33.15%) reported subthreshold depressive symptoms or possible, probable or major depressive episodes. Girls revealed a higher prevalence of possible-, probable-, or major depressive episode than boys. Relative to those with no or low body dissatisfaction, adolescents with clinically significant body dissatisfaction were 24 times more likely to also report possible-, probable-, or major depressive episodes. Among boys and girls, clinically significant body dissatisfaction was associated with higher levels of dietary restraint and engagement in strategies to increase muscle size. Greater attention to identification and early intervention for body dissatisfaction is needed, especially for girls.

Keywordsbody dissatisfaction; clinically signifcant; depressive symptoms; prevalence; adolescent; boys; girls
Year2021
JournalEuropean Child and Adolescent Psychiatry: official journal of the European Society for Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
PublisherSpringer Medizin
ISSN1018-8827
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1007/s00787-021-01824-4
Scopus EID2-s2.0-85107983861
Research or scholarlyResearch
Page range1-12
FunderAustralian Research Council (ARC)
Publisher's version
License
All rights reserved
File Access Level
Controlled
Output statusPublished
Publication dates
Online15 Jun 2021
Publication process dates
Accepted08 Jun 2021
Deposited05 Aug 2021
ARC Funded ResearchThis output has been funded, wholly or partially, under the Australian Research Council Act 2001
Grant IDARC/DP170100709
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