Body Dysmorphic Disorder Counselling in London
What is Body Dysmorphic Disorder?
Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD) is defined as a condition that consists of an individual obsessing over perceived defects or flaws in appearance - a flaw that may be considered minor or nonexistent to others. It is estimated that in the United States, approximately 1.7% to 2.4% of the general population — about 1 in 50 people live with this disorder. In the UK approximately 5 of every 1000 people are living with this disorder.
Signs of Body Dysmorphic Disorder
Signs of Body Dysmorphic Disorder include an intense preoccupation with a perceived flaw and the belief that this flaw makes you ugly or deformed. This will often be accompanied by the belief that others are as focused on this flaw and perceive you negatively or mock you.
Additionally, you may engage in behaviors that aim to fix or alter the perceived flaw, such as checking yourself in the mirror, grooming, or skin picking. You may also be preoccupied to the point that you experience social anxiety or avoid situations in order to hide the perceived flaw from others.
Someone with Body Dysmorphic Disorder will usually obsess over one or more parts of the body, more commonly about features such as face, hair, skin, breast size, muscle size and tone, and genitalia.
Causes of Body Dysmorphic Disorder
Causes of Body Dysmorphic Disorder are unknown but can result as a combination of causes. Brain differences of abnormalities in brain structure or neurochemistry can lead to the development of Body Dysmorphic Disorder. Some studies have shown that the disease is more likely in those whose blood relatives have Body Dysmorphic Disorder or obsessive compulsive disorder. Furthermore, your environment, life experiences, and culture can affect the development of BDD especially if you have negative evaluations about your body or childhood neglect or abuse.
Treatment for Body Dysmorphic Disorder
Treatment for Body Dysmorphic Disorder will depend on severity and this will be determined by you and your therapist. One option for treatment is Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT). Utilizing CBT will help you develop skills to manage negative thoughts, emotional reactions and negative behaviours that result from Body Dysmorphic Disorder. You will also learn coping skills to improve your mental health and replace unhealthy behaviours and urges with positive and flexible thinking. CBT may also be combined with Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) to help control obsessions and repetitive behaviours.
You may also build on your treatment plan to expand on skills to manage Body Dysmorphic Disorder. It is recommended t0 stay on task with your treatment plan and educating yourself on the disorder. Work with your therapist so that you can identify triggers and warning signs of the negative behaviours. Physical activity can assist in managing symptoms of anxiety and low energy that can sometimes accompany Body Dysmorphic Disorder.
For more information about talking therapies and treatment programmes available at our Clinics in London, Milan and Rome please visit our Treatment page.
We offer Psychological Therapies for Body Dysmorphic Disorder to Adults and Teenagers at our clinics in City of London, London Bridge, London Kensington, London Islington, London Marylebone, London Oxford Circus, Milan City Life, Milan Porta Romana, Rome San Giovanni, Rome Piazza Bologna, Rome Garbatella and Online worldwide.
All our Therapists offer Psychological Therapies for Body Dysmorphic Disorder to Adults and Teenagers. Click here to meet the Team.
Sessions with our Psychologists are by prepaid appointments only. You can find out more about our fees on our Fees Page.
Further Reading about Body Dysmorphic Disorder
For further reading, please click here to view a blog written by Body Dysmorphic Disorder correspondent Caroline Turriff on her recovery as well as advice for managing symptoms of Body Dysmorphic Disorder. Another blog called Crowdmed is a collection of blogs from patients and professionals that share experiences, tips, and tricks for managing symptoms of Body Dysmorphic Disorder. Please click here to view the homepage.