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Body Image: Methods of Assessment in Children, Adolescents, and Adults

  • Enrica Marzola
  • Massimo Cuzzolaro
  • Giovanni Abbate-Daga
Chapter

Abstract

Body image is a broad and multifaceted construct that describes subjective perceptions of and attitudes toward the body, mostly its appearance. Body image concerns characterize a variety of psychiatric disorders and in non-affected individuals alike. Some factors make the assessment of body image difficult: body image varies over time, and it also depends on different situations. Moreover, gender, age, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, and body mass index modulate the relationship with the physical appearance and make the psychometric evaluation of body image even more complicated. Nevertheless, a variety of assessments has been developed over time to capture as reliably as possible the different components of such a construct. Scientific literature has increasingly investigated the development of body image dissatisfaction in young individuals, also because it may represent a risk factor for the onset of unhealthy eating behaviors and full-blown eating and weight disorders in life. This chapter will provide the reader with a review of many different methods of body image assessment across the life span, ranging from childhood to adulthood. A subchapter and two appendixes illustrate the Body Uneasiness Test, a self-report questionnaire normed and validated in Italy on large samples of patients with eating disorders, obesity (class I, II, and III), and controls.

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Enrica Marzola
    • 1
  • Massimo Cuzzolaro
    • 2
  • Giovanni Abbate-Daga
    • 1
  1. 1.Eating Disorders Center, Department of NeuroscienceUniversity of TurinTurinItaly
  2. 2.Formerly Medical Pathophysiology Department, Eating Disorders and Obesity UnitSapienza University of RomeRomeItaly

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