Document Type : Original Article


Department of Social Medicine, School of Medicine, Lorestan University of Medical Sciences, Khorramabad, Iran


BACKGROUND/AIM: Adolescent girls’ concerns about their body images can negatively affect their
social and academic performance. This study aimed to determine the prevalence of body image
concern (BIC) in adolescent schoolgirls in Iran and its risk factors.
PATIENTS AND METHODS: This epidemiological study with cross‑sectional design was conducted
in 2018 on 396 middle schoolgirls aged 12–17 years (mean age = 14 years) living in Khorramabad,
Iran. For screening BIC, the Persian version of BIC inventory (BICI) was used. Their birth order,
school grade, school type, father’s education, and household income were also recorded. Collected
data were analyzed in SPSS v. 18 software using descriptive statistics and Chi‑square test.
RESULTS: Of 396 girls, 106 (26.8%) had BIC, 89 (84%) reported moderate BIC, and 17 (16%)
severe BIC. Their mean BICI score was 40.84 ± 12.93 (out of 42). Most of them reported to spend
a significant amount of time checking their appearance in the mirror (n = 81, 20.5%) and examining
flaws in their appearance (n = 74, 18.7%). A few of them were embarrassed to leave the house
because of the appearance and avoided from looking at the appearance in the mirror (n = 6, 1.5%).
There was no significant difference in BIC severity in terms of birth order, school grade, school type,
father’s education, and household income factors (P > 0.05).
CONCLUSION: The prevalence of BIC among schoolgirls in Iran is high. Appropriate therapeutic
interventions should be carried out to improve their quality of life, mental health, and self‑esteem to
reduce the BIC prevalence.


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