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ERIC Number: EJ892621
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Sep
Pages: 11
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 67
ISSN: ISSN-0361-6843
Genital Appearance Dissatisfaction: Implications for Women's Genital Image Self-Consciousness, Sexual Esteem, Sexual Satisfaction, and Sexual Risk
Schick, Vanessa R.; Calabrese, Sarah K.; Rima, Brandi N.; Zucker, Alyssa N.
Psychology of Women Quarterly, v34 n3 p394-404 Sep 2010
Findings regarding the link between body image and sexuality have been equivocal, possibly because of the insensitivity of many body image measures to potential variability across sensory aspects of the body (e.g., appearance versus odor), individual body parts (e.g., genitalia versus thighs), and social settings (e.g., public versus intimate). The current study refined existing methods of evaluating women's body image in the context of sexuality by focusing upon two highly specified dimensions: satisfaction with the visual appearance of the genitalia and self-consciousness about the genitalia during a sexual encounter. Genital appearance dissatisfaction, genital image self-consciousness, and multiple facets of sexuality were examined among a sample of 217 undergraduate women using an online survey. Path analysis revealed that greater dissatisfaction with genital appearance was associated with higher genital image self-consciousness during physical intimacy, which, in turn, was associated with lower sexual esteem, sexual satisfaction, and motivation to avoid risky sexual behavior. These findings underscore the detrimental impact of negative genital perceptions on young women's sexual well-being, which is of particular concern given their vulnerability at this stage of sexual development as well as the high rates of sexually transmitted infections within this age group. Interventions that enhance satisfaction with the natural appearance of their genitalia could facilitate the development of a healthy sexual self-concept and provide long-term benefits in terms of sexual safety and satisfaction. (Contains 1 figure and 2 tables.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A