Understanding Body Dysmorphic Disorder

Body dysmorphic disorder is considered as a form of mental illness usually characterized by severe concerns about a flaw in one’s appearance. A flaw may be something minor or one that is just imagined. The concern for such a flaw can reach a point where one may feel shameful or distressed enough to avoid being seen by anyone. Body dysmorphic disorder is also known as dysmorphophobia or fear of having a deformity.

Body Dysmorphic Disorder Causes

What specifically causes body dysmorphic disorder is not yet entirely known. Many researchers believe that it is a kind of mental illness and may result from a combination of factors. Some of the factors may be biochemical, genetic or even environmental.

Body Dysmorphic Disorder Symptoms

There are various symptoms that are associated with body dysmorphic disorder. One is a preoccupation with one’s physical appearance. People with this disorder also seem to believe that people take special notice of their appearance in a negative way. Excessive grooming and extreme self-consciousness are also seen among people suffering from body dysmorphic disorder. They might also wear excessive make up and clothing to try to hide their perceived flaws. Some suffers may also avoid social situations most of the time.

Body Dysmorphic Disorder Symptoms

Treating body dysmorphic disorder can prove to be difficult since most sufferers usually are not willing or even deny treatment. But if they do become active participants in the treatment, options may include psychotherapy often combined with medication to treat the disorder. Psychotherapy helps by making people with the disorder understand their condition more and learn positive ways to react and handle feelings. Although there are no medications available that is used to treat body dysmorphic disorder specifically, other medications used to treat other similar disorders such as depression can also help in treating some of its symptoms.


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