Photo Retouching And Its Social Dangers

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Harmful body expectations mean ads should carry warnings if model photos are digitally altered, say MPs.

 

The Health and Social Care Committee wants the government to introduce new laws quickly.

 

It also said that social media promotion of cosmetic services such as dermal fillers should be tightly regulated.

 

Those booking a procedure should be given a 48-hour cooling-off period and a full medical and mental health history check.

 

Former health secretary Jeremy Hunt, who chairs the committee, said: “We heard of some distressing experiences – a conveyor-belt approach, with patients being pressured into having more and more treatments.”

 

He added that people were sometimes left with “life-changing” consequences, such as permanent scarring.

 

The committee’s report said: “The government should urgently bring legislation to require commercial social media platforms to carry health warnings on images that have been digitally altered to change a person’s body shape, size or appearance.”

 

It also called for a review of how image-based content is regulated on social media.

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The Digital alteration of people’s bodies to sell products creates unrealistic beauty standards. This can result in people experiencing mental health problems such as anxiety, depression, and eating disorders. The Health and Social Care Committee wants the government to quickly introduce new laws regulating retouched photos and social media promotion of cosmetic procedures.

 

Those booking a procedure should be given a 48-hour cooling-off period and a full medical and mental health history check. Former health secretary Jeremy Hunt, who chairs the committee, said: “We heard of some distressing experiences – a conveyor-belt approach, with patients being pressured into having more and more treatments.” He added that people were sometimes left with “life-changing” consequences, such as permanent scarring.

 

The committee’s report said: “The government should urgently bring legislation to require commercial social media platforms to carry health warnings on images that have been digitally altered to change a person’s body shape, size or appearance.” It also called for a review of how image-based content is regulated on social media.

 

According to the Health and Social Care Committee, retouched photos should carry warnings if they have been digitally altered to change a person’s body shape, size, or appearance. The committee also said that social media promotion of cosmetic services should be tightly regulated to protect people from being pressured into unnecessary procedures. Those booking a system should be given a 48-hour cooling-off period and a full medical and mental health history check.

 

Former health secretary Jeremy Hunt, who chairs the committee, said: “We heard of some distressing experiences – a conveyor-belt approach, with patients being pressured into having more and more treatments.” He added that people were sometimes left with “life-changing” consequences, such as permanent scarring. The committee’s report said: “The government should urgently bring legislation to require commercial social media platforms to carry health warnings on images that have been digitally altered to change a person’s body shape, size or appearance.” It also called for a review of how image-based content is regulated on social media.

 

Those victims of body-dysmorphic disorder and other mental health problems associated with the constant pressure to look perfect deserve better. The government should now protect people from being misled by retouched photos and social media posts about cosmetic procedures.

 

What do you think? Should social media platforms be required to carry health warnings on images that have been digitally altered? Let us know in the comments.

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