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Body Dysmorphic Disorder - BDD

Poushali Ganguly Jun 18, 2019
A psychological disorder, resulting in a person being obsessive about his looks and also delusional about having defects in their looks, is known as the body dysmorphic disorder. This story includes information regarding its symptoms, causes, and treatment.
Body dysmorphic disorder makes its patients obsessive about their looks. In fact, they rue on an imagined defect in their appearance, which they think makes them look ugly and heinous. They have a strong negative feeling regarding their appearance, which prevents them from leading a normal lifestyle.
Like most psychological disorders, it can be treated with a combination of medicines and counseling. Medications and talking are the methods of probing, which help the patient to come out with the reasons behind their firm belief regarding their looks.
Gradually, patients are brought face to face with reality, and they consequently start living a normal life, wherein, they reveal themselves as confident and smart individuals.

Signs and Symptoms

  • Constantly touching the face and picking at the skin to level it.
  • Frequently checking the body in mirrors, or even glass doors and windows.
  • Obsessively watching a celebrity, whose looks the patient appreciates and thinks are flawless.
  • Constantly seeking reassurance about their looks from people around.
  • At times, patients fail to look at their own reflection in the mirrors and glasses.
  • Majority of the patients do not want to socialize, and feel depressed most of the time.
  • Patients also show obsession with corrective techniques, like plastic surgery.
  • They also constantly compare their looks with the looks of other people.
  • Patients use their hands to hide their flaws and defects.
  • They also wear accessories, like hats and masks, to hide their flaws.
  • They go through elaborate grooming sessions, and frequent salons and beauty spas more than normal.
  • Dangerously, they are desperate enough to go ahead and perform surgeries on themselves, like plastic surgery, liposuction, which are bound to lead to dangerous situations.
At times, patients of BDD also try to commit suicide.


Most of the causes are not physical, instead, they are related to the psyche of a person, which might have been disturbed due to a certain reason.
  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
  • Anxiety Disorder
  • Cultural Aspects
  • Chemical Imbalance in the Brain
  • Eating Disorder
BDD arises from one of these factors which create an inferiority complex in people, like if somebody hails from a race that has dark people, and comes to a place where there are only fair-skinned people, then a complex might arise.
Similarly if there is an eating disorder, one might feel that he or she is too fat or thin. There are specific features which become the region of concern, like the nose, hair, skin, thighs, legs, teeth, breasts, genitals, chin, eyebrows, and fingers.


Most of the time, antidepressants are given in order to calm them. BDD can also be cured with the help of curative therapy, which can take all the negative feelings out of one's mind and body, so that the thinking procedure can be changed. Patients are taught to check their thoughts, and control or channelize them towards a positive direction.