Sexual Health Case Study
Sexual Health (WHO 2006)
Sexual health is:
A state of physical, emotional, mental and social well-being related to sexuality
Not merely the absence of disease, dysfunction or infirmity
Relationships, as well as the possibility of having pleasurable and safe sexual experiences, free of coercion discrimination and violence.
WHO = world health organization
Broad definition to cover broad range of topics. Has to be inclusive of multiple elements, not just one fact that can be misrepresented.
The Sexual Body
Social Construction of Body Image
Changes over time
Changes across culture
Society is preoccupied with physical perfection, which can have both healthy and unhealthy consequences.
Critics, including some health professionals, believed that corsets caused cancer, anemia, birth defects, miscarriages, and damage to internal organs. The tight restriction of the body did deplete lung capacity and caused fainting.
The popular concept of an obsession with a tiny waist is probably exaggerated. The competition of cinch in to improbable dimensions was more of a fetish or a fad and not the norm as depicted in the 1939 film, Gone With the Wind, when Scarlett O’Hara cinches her corset to a 17″ waist
Sexual Health Disparities
Exist on multiple dimensions:
Race or Ethnicity
Class/Socioeconomic Status (SES)
Lesbian issues–breast cancer, medical treatment (stigma), lifestyle, etc.
Race or ethnicity–lack of access to education for many, decreased access to health care
Class/SES–same as race/ethnicity
Gender–less focus in research, different dr-pt. Relationship, outright abuse in some cultures–female genital mutilation (in other cultures and in our own–as a cure for masturbation). Also male circumcision in our own culture.
Extreme Influence on Individuals certainly exists today, just in different forms
Unfortunately, our standard of beauty tends to equate beauty and health, with thinness.
While we have moments of opposing messages, largely this has held true culturally
Over the past three decades eating disorder prevalence has risen rapidly
While most of those with eating disorders are women, we often stereotype the disorder as only belonging to women
10% of those with an eating disorder are men, and that number is rising rapidly in younger generations
Two main Diagnoses
Additionally, binge eating disorder
Retreating from sexuality