*In the original article published by Focus on the Family, it was reported that young girls and boys are being oversexualized by simple images and sex fused media.

American girls are increasingly being fed a steady diet of products and images that pressure them to be sexy. From clothing to cartoons, choreography to commercials, the emphasis on sexuality undercuts parents’ efforts to instill purity in their daughters.

The American Psychological Association (APA) warns that this sexualization of girls is harmful to their self-image and healthy development. “[Girls are] experiencing teen pressures at younger and younger ages. However, they are not able to deal with these issues because their cognitive development is out of sync with their social, emotional and sexual development,” the APA reported.

The proliferation of sexual images also undermines a girl’s confidence in her own body. In fact, research links sexualization with three of the most common mental health problems diagnosed in girls and women — eating disorders, low self-esteem and depression.

Let’s take a closer look at some of the cultural influences bombarding our daughters.

Read more at FocusOnTheFamily.com.