Sexual Health Case Study

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:

Sexual Orientation

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

Plastic Surgery

Eating Disorders





Eating Disorders








Unfortunately, our standard of beauty tends to equate beauty and health, with thinness.



Eating Disorders




While we have moments of opposing messages, largely this has held true culturally


Over the past three decades eating disorder prevalence has risen rapidly

Eating Disorders




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

Eating Disorders




Two main Diagnoses

Anorexia Nervosa

Bulimia Nervosa


Additionally, binge eating disorder

Eating Disorders




Eating Disorders/Sexuality

Retreating from sexuality