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Cleft Palate Craniofac J. 2017 Jan;54(1):2-12. doi: 10.1597/15-167. Epub 2016 Jan 11.

Body Image and Quality of Life in Adolescents With Craniofacial Conditions.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To evaluate body image in adolescents with and without craniofacial conditions and to examine relationships between body image and quality of life.

DESIGN:

Case-control design.

SETTING:

A pediatric hospital's craniofacial center and primary care practices.

PARTICIPANTS:

Seventy adolescents with visible craniofacial conditions and a demographically matched sample of 42 adolescents without craniofacial conditions.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE:

Adolescents completed measures of quality of life and body image including satisfaction with weight, facial and overall appearance, investment in appearance (importance of appearance to self-worth), and body image disturbance (appearance-related distress and impairment in functioning).

RESULTS:

Adolescents with craniofacial conditions reported lower appearance investment (P < .001) and were more likely to report concerns about facial features (P < .02) compared with nonaffected youth. Females in both groups reported greater investment in appearance, greater body image disturbance, and lower weight satisfaction compared with males (P < .01). Within both groups, greater body image disturbance was associated with lower quality of life (P < .01). The two groups did not differ significantly on measures of quality of life, body image disturbance, or satisfaction with appearance.

CONCLUSIONS:

Body image and quality of life in adolescents with craniofacial conditions are similar to nonaffected youth. Relationships between body image and quality of life emphasize that appearance perceptions are important to adolescents' well-being regardless of whether they have a facial disfigurement. Investment in one's appearance may explain variations in body image satisfaction and serve as an intervention target, particularly for females.

KEYWORDS:

adolescents; appearance investment; body image; craniofacial conditions; quality of life

PMID:
26751907
PMCID:
PMC5603909
DOI:
10.1597/15-167
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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