The Therapeutic Effects of Body Modification
Body modification is the act of purposeful alteration to the physical appearance. The meaning and purpose of modifying the body is unique to the individual engaging in the practice. Throughout the existing literature body modification has been linked with exposure to early life trauma and psychological distress. The present study examined the explanatory effects of body modification (i.e., tattooing, piercing, and scarification) on the relationship between early life trauma and adulthood symptomatology of posttraumatic stress, dissociation, and depression. Participants were 360 adults in the general population, who completed a body modification questionnaire, measures of early life trauma and posttraumatic stress, dissociation, and depression symptoms. Multiple mediation analyses were performed to detect effects of the models proposed in the present study. The findings of this study revealed that early life trauma significantly predicted body modification in the context of posttraumatic stress symptoms, and that body modification significantly predicted posttraumatic stress and depression. There was a trending toward significant mediation effect of body modification on the relationship between early life trauma and posttraumatic stress. There was also a trending toward significant negative mediation effect of body modification on the relationship between early life trauma and depression. Taken cautiously, these findings both support and are inconsistent with prior research.
"The Therapeutic Effects of Body Modification"
ETD Collection for Tennessee State University.