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Creative playing and the childhood obesit

Childhood obesity is one of the most preoccupying actual disorders. The study of its psychological factors is scarce; however, it may be associated to specific characteristics of playing. The present study aimed to investigate if there is any damage related to the difficulty of expressing creativity in obese children's playing, and, if so, its characteristics. Five case studies had been carried with between 7-10-year-old obese boys of average socioeconomic level and intact families. Two psychological tests were applied, the Draw-a-Person Test (DAP) and the CAT-A. The results suggested children's difficulties in creating, symbolizing and playing, leading to a feeling of solitude and abandonment. The parental figures had been seen as ambivalent and not able to satisfy children's needs and dependence, but demanding their autonomy, tough. Compulsory eating was presented as the only way to interact with the environment, by filling the affective privation experienced in precocious relations.

obesity; playing; children; projective techniques; creativity

Programa de Pós-graduação em Psicologia e do Programa de Pós-graduação em Psicobiologia, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte Caixa Postal 1622, 59078-970 Natal RN Brazil, Tel.: +55 84 3342-2236(5) - Natal - RN - Brazil