Body Dysmorphia Disorder: More Than Disliking Your Appearance
INTRODUCTION TO BODY DYSMORPHIA Disorder (BDD)
Many may mistake body dysmorphia disorder to be an eating disorder, as it can have many overlaps with eating disorders such as bulimia and anorexia. However, it also manifests itself in many different ways, since it doesn’t necessarily need to be attached to one’s weight. Body dysmorphia disorder is marked by an unhealthy tendency to obsess over how an aspect about their appearance is like. This ranges from one’s nose, eyes, skin, waist, hips, smile, teeth, and etc. Any issue with one’s appearance is essentially magnified by one who suffers from BDD.
When the word “obsessed” is used, it is no exaggeration; body dysmorphia is not simply disliking a part of your appearance, almost everyone experiences that. Body dysmorphia causes these dislikes to have an intrusive effect on one’s life, whether it is wasting time, avoiding leaving the house, and performing tasks.
When talking about such compulsive disorders, those from the outside should know that one cannot simply “stop thinking it”. It is imperative that the issue is not reduced to such an easy fix. Compulsive disorders have an overbearing control over one’s life, and cannot be solved by simply not thinking about it. In fact, many times, those suffering from compulsive disorders don’t necessarily see anything wrong with their way of thinking, and if they do, it’s still hard to break from it.
BODY DYSMORPHIA STATISTICS
It is noted that men and women have different concerns of their own on what triggers their BDD; women were more likely to focus on their fatness, skin, and teeth, as opposed to men who focused on their thinness, head hair, and shortness. This may result from the bodily preferences and standards which are culturally desirable in regards to men and women.
BODY DYSMORPHIA TREATMENTS
Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy: this treatment targets the action-reaction mechanism between one’s thoughts and consequent actions. It treats not only how to recognize these adverse thoughts, but seeks to instill new ones to combat the actions found in compulsive disorders.
AYANA AND BDD HELP
We are committed to helping those from marginalized communities gain access to treat this disorder, which may derive from certain aspects of their life which, only culturally competent therapists can comprehend. Whether it is feelings of inadequacy due to how one views themselves with respect to their race, sexual orientation, and/or culture, these are unique to minority communities across America. And when addressing such disorders like BDD, we hope to provide our fellow communities with therapists who will go deeper to understand the issues at hand, rather than treating them quickly and failing to understand the intricacies of one’s psyche.