Medical professionals are warning against a growing phenomenon of "Snapchat dysmorphia", teenagers seeking plastic surgery in the hopes of achieving the look of the airbrushed images they post online.
According to writings of three dermatologists from the Boston University School of Medicine, an increasing number of patients are seeking out Snapchat-inspired plastic surgery.
Doctors are raising concerns about a new way social media may be messing with your self-esteem: something called "Snapchat dysmorphia".
And in today's news that will make you question society as a whole, we bring you a report by The American Academy of Facial Reconstructive Plastic Surgery, which says that the majority of its clinicians have now seen patients who want to undergo plastic surgery in order to look better in selfies. The paper outlined a new twist on the condition known as body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) in which people have an excessive preoccupation with a perceived flaw in how it appears to others.
Many social media apps like Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook and Facetune allow users to take pictures of themselves, "selfies", with filters that put cartoon images like crowns, flowers or rainbows around the user.
"Snapchat dysmorphia has patients seeking out cosmetic surgery to look like filtered versions of themselves instead, with fuller lips, bigger eyes, or a thinner nose", they write. And a 2015 study of adolescent girls found that those who regularly shared and edited photos on social media had higher levels of body dissatisfaction than those who did not. "These apps allow one to alter his or her appearance in an instant and conform to an unrealistic and often unattainable standard of beauty", they wrote.
"It can be argued that these apps are making us lose touch with reality because we expect to look perfectly primped and filtered in real life as well", the paper said.