(CBS) – You can it see it when models walk down the runway – A visible gap between their thighs, or a thigh gap. Teens and women are becoming dangerously infatuated with acquiring the thin legs and wide thigh gaps.
Thin legs are the envy of young girls and women around the country, feeding their insecurities. More and more are going to dangerous lengths to create a thigh gap.
“People are working excessively at exercising in order to maybe change the way their body is or restricting what they eat,” said University of Miami body consultant, Tammy Sifre.
Facebook, Tumblr and Twitter are inundated with images praising models with thin legs and wide gaps. There are even more than 700,000 followers on Facebook and Twitter accounts dedicated to the thigh gap.
Sifre said it’s a toxic environment for teens and young women to be surrounded by.
“It’s sending the message (that) the body is objectified,” Sifre said. “The body is something that needs to be changed, that needs to be fixed and it’s not good enough the way it is.”
But with plastic surgery that insecurity can be quickly fixed.
“You make a little incision and use rods that have a little hole in the middle and it sucks out the fat,” said Dr. Carlos Wolf from Miami Plastic Surgery.
Doctor Wolf said the inner thigh surgery vacuums out the stubborn fat between your legs, but surgery so young could be a precursor to an obsession.
“Some of the times when they start so early they become addicted to it,” Dr. Wolf said.
Moms are a large group that elect to nip and tuck their inner thighs. Janet Correa lipoed her thighs after having two kids. She has always been self-conscious about her thicker thighs; something she attributes to her Cuban heritage.
“I was never happy with my typical Latin body,” Correa said. “Now, the way you look when you wear tight jeans and leggings, it’s amazing. a thigh gap!”
Miami Plastic Surgery Dr. Michael Kelley performs dozens of inner thighliposuction surgeries a year.
“They’re self-conscious about their thighs touching. Its always something that women are more concerned about men. Men could care less,” said Kelley.
But for teens and younger women, before opting for surgery, an unhealthy fixation should be addressed.
“I think what’s important is what kind of relationship a person has with their body,” Sifre said. “Sometimes (surgery is) an indication of not having a good relationship with one’s body.”
If social media is an indication of teens and women’s relationships with their bodies and specifically, their thighs, their insecurities are widening.
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