Body dysmorphia Watch

Anonymous #1
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Since the beginning of my teenage years I have been an incredibly anxious and self-conscious person and In the most recent years I have felt myself become worse. I don’t know if this will make sense, but I constantly feel as if I am watching myself from an outsiders perspective and so can see myself mess up or look ugly. As a result, I haven’t worn a vest top or any kind of clothing that shows my arms for almost two years now because of how self conscious I am of them. I never wear jeans or tighter fitted trousers because I don’t like my legs. I will never wear anything short without some kind of tights because I also don’t like my skin. I have attempted extreme and unhealthy ‘diets’ and so on. Whilst I have never been diagnosed with body dysmorphia I believe that this could be what I suffer with. I really hate this mindset and want more than anything to feel comfortable in myself but don’t know how to stop this,if any one can give me advice I would really appreciate it.
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marinade
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I don't know how you feel, but maybe time to talk to a doctor?

In terms of diagnostic features, this is what the DSM says about body dysmorphic disorder (which is classifies as an OCD and related disorder). It's basically the commentary alongside the diagnostic criteria:


Individuals with body dysmorphic disorder (formerly known as dysmorphophobia) are preoccupied with one or more perceived defects or flaws in their physical appearance, which they believe look ugly, unattractive, abnormal, or deformed (Criterion A). The perceived flaws are not observable or appear only slight to other individuals. Concerns range from looking “unattractive” or “not right” to looking “hideous” or “like a monster.” Preoccupations can focus on one or many body areas, most commonly the skin (e.g., perceived acne, scars, lines, wrinkles, paleness), hair (e.g., “thinning” hair or “excessive” body or facial hair), or nose (e.g., size or shape)(Phillips et al. 2010b). However, any body area can be the focus of concern (e.g., eyes, teeth, weight, stomach, breasts, legs, face size or shape, lips, chin, eyebrows, genitals). Some individuals are concerned about perceived asymmetry of body areas(Phillips et al. 2010b). The preoccupations are intrusive, unwanted, time-consuming (occurring, on average, 3–8 hours per day), and usually difficult to resist or control(Phillips et al. 2010b).

Excessive repetitive behaviors or mental acts (e.g., comparing) are performed in response to the preoccupation (Criterion B). The individual feels driven to perform these behaviors, which are not pleasurable and may increase anxiety and dysphoria(Phillips et al. 2010b; Veale and Riley 2001; Windheim et al. 2011). They are typically time-consuming and difficult to resist or control(Phillips et al. 2010b). Common behaviors are comparing one’s appearance with that of other individuals; repeatedly checking perceived defects in mirrors or other reflecting surfaces or examining them directly; excessively grooming (e.g., combing, styling, shaving, plucking, or pulling hair); camouflaging (e.g., repeatedly applying makeup or covering disliked areas with such things as a hat, clothing, makeup, or hair); seeking reassurance about how the perceived flaws look; touching disliked areas to check them; excessively exercising or weight lifting; and seeking cosmetic procedures. Some individuals excessively tan (e.g., to darken “pale” skin or diminish perceived acne), repeatedly change their clothes (e.g., to camouflage perceived defects), or compulsively shop (e.g., for beauty products)(Phillips et al. 2010b). Compulsive skin picking intended to improve perceived skin defects is common and can cause skin damage, infections, or ruptured blood vessels(Didie et al. 2010). The preoccupation must cause clinically significant distress or impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning (Criterion C); usually both are present. Body dysmorphic disorder must be differentiated from an eating disorder.
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Pachuco
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(Original post by marinade)
I don't know how you feel, but maybe time to talk to a doctor?

In terms of diagnostic features, this is what the DSM says about body dysmorphic disorder (which is classifies as an OCD and related disorder). It's basically the commentary alongside the diagnostic criteria:
Thanks for this. It's like reading a description of myself.
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marinade
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(Original post by Pachuco)
Thanks for this. It's like reading a description of myself.
Interesting.

I posted it as I believe most people read derived copies of the criteria in the DSM or what wikipedia says. I've met a few people who have said they have body dysmorphic disorder which can be quite interesting conversations because they often emphasize how 'rare' it is (no, it isn't) and that it isn't to do with the face - contrary to what a lot of people say the nose is actually quoted in a lot of studies and in Philips, Understanding Body Dysmorphic Disorder as the most common after skin and hair.
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Pachuco
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(Original post by marinade)
Interesting.

I posted it as I believe most people read derived copies of the criteria in the DSM or what wikipedia says. I've met a few people who have said they have body dysmorphic disorder which can be quite interesting conversations because they often emphasize how 'rare' it is (no, it isn't) and that it isn't to do with the face - contrary to what a lot of people say the nose is actually quoted in a lot of studies and in Philips, Understanding Body Dysmorphic Disorder as the most common after skin and hair.
Yep, I have heard that. For me it's not the nose.
The thing that makes me question whether it's BDD is that I believe the defects are real and very noticeable but I suppose lots of people will say that.

I'm not going to go into too much but as I said, most of that quote sounds like me.
I haven't met anyone who has said they have BDD and I kept everything to myself for years because I felt there was something wrong with me to have these things affecting me so much, I didn't want to admit it to anybody at all. Only fairly recently have I been a bit more open.
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