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BDD Causes

To date, the exact cause of BDD is not clear. Current theories point to the following risk factors for BDD: brain chemical imbalance, obsessive compulsive disorder, eating disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, as well as certain psychological, behavioral, and cultural factors.

BDD Definition

BDD or body dysmorphic disorder is a condition wherein the affected individual is excessively fixated or preoccupied with real or imagined defects in his/her physical appearance.

BDD Diagnosis

The Body Dysmorphic Disorder Questionnaire (BDDQ) as well as the Body Dysmorphic Disorder Examination (BDDE) are the two most common diagnostic tools used by psychiatrists and psychologists in BDD diagnosis. These tests evaluate the patient's preoccupation and perception of his/her own appearance, degree of self-consciousness, tendency to overvalue physical looks in determining self-worth, anti-social tendencies, etc.

BDD Symptoms and Signs

Individuals with BDD have an exaggerated or distorted view of how they look. They are obsessed with physical characteristics or perceived flaws in their appearance, and consider themselves disfigured or ugly. Common signs of body dysmorphic disorder include: frequently comparing one's looks with that of others; repeatedly checking one's appearance on mirrors or reflective surfaces; refusing to be photographed; poor posture to hide a real or imagined defect; wearing excessive clothing or makeup to hide perceived defects; elaborating grooming rituals; constantly seeking reassurance about perceived flaws; feelings of anxiety, insecurity, and self consciousness; as well as social phobia resulting from the imagined defect. Most people with BDD are obsessed about their body's size, shape, and symmetry, as well as skin characteristics, body or facial hair, and breast size, among others.

BDD Treatment

BDD treatment involves a multi-disciplinary approach involving medications and psychotherapy. Antidepressants are commonly prescribed along with cognitive behavior therapy to help patients reduce their obsession and anxiety, as well as to increase their confidence and allow them to function socially.

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