Body dysmorphic disorder may be a psychological state disorder during which you cannot stop brooding about one or more perceived defects or flaws in your appearance — a flaw that appears minor or can't be seen by others. But you'll feel so embarrassed, ashamed and anxious that you simply may avoid many social situations.
When you have body dysmorphic disorder, you intensely specialise in your appearance and body image, repeatedly checking the mirror, grooming or seeking reassurance, sometimes for several hours every day . Your perceived flaw and therefore the repetitive behaviors cause you significant distress, and impact your ability to function in your lifestyle.
You may hunt down numerous cosmetic procedures to undertake to "fix" your perceived flaw. Afterward, you may feel temporary satisfaction or a reduction in your distress, but often the anxiety returns and you may resume searching for other ways to fix your perceived flaw.
Treatment of body dysmorphic disorder may include cognitive behavioral therapy and drugs.
Signs and symptoms of body dysmorphic disorder include:
Ø Being extremely preoccupied with a perceived flaw in appearance that to others can't be seen or appears minor
Ø Strong belief that you have a defect in your appearance that makes you ugly or deformed
Ø Belief that others take special notice of your appearance in a negative way or mock you
Ø Engaging in behaviors aimed at fixing or hiding the perceived flaw that are difficult to resist or control, such as frequently checking the mirror, grooming or skin picking
Ø Attempting to hide perceived flaws with styling, makeup or clothes
Ø Constantly comparing your appearance with others
Ø Frequently seeking reassurance about your appearance from others
Ø Having perfectionist tendencies
Ø Seeking cosmetic procedures with little satisfaction
Ø Avoiding social situations
When to see a doctor
Shame and embarrassment about your appearance may keep you from seeking treatment for body dysmorphic disorder. But if you have any signs or symptoms, see your primary care provider or a mental health professional.
Body dysmorphic disorder usually doesn't recover on its own. If left untreated, it's going to worsen over time, resulting in anxiety, extensive medical bills, severe depression, and even suicidal thoughts and behavior.
It's not known specifically what causes body dysmorphic disorder. Like many other psychological state conditions, body dysmorphic disorder may result from a mixture of issues, like a case history of the disorder, abnormalities within the brain, and negative evaluations or experiences about your body or self-image.
Body dysmorphic disorder typically starts within the early teenage years and it affects both males and females.
Certain factors seem to extend the danger of developing or triggering body dysmorphic disorder, including:
Ø Having blood relatives with body dysmorphic disorder or obsessive-compulsive disorder
Ø Negative life experiences, such as childhood teasing, neglect or abuse
Ø Certain personality traits, such as perfectionism
Ø Societal pressure or expectations of beauty
Ø Having another mental health condition, such as anxiety or depression
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