Everyone has never felt confident about their physical shortcomings or personal appearance. However, if it has caused excessive anxiety, it could be a sign of a mental disorder, body dysmorphic disorder. What Causes Body Dysmorphic Disorder?

Unfortunately, the exact cause of body dysmorphic disorder is not yet known. However, this mental disorder is thought to arise due to a combination of the following factors:

  • Genetics

Body dysmorphic disorder(BDD) is more common in people who have a family history of the disease. However, it is not certain whether this condition is inherited genetically or is the result of parenting errors.

  • Brain Structural Abnormalities

Body dysmorphic disorder can also occur due to abnormalities in the structure of the brain , or the compounds in it.

  • Environment

In addition to these two things, the environment is a factor that can increase a person’s risk of body dysmorphic disorder . Negative judgments from the environment on self-image, bad experiences in the past, or trauma in childhood can cause a person to experience body dysmorphic disorder.

However, in addition to these causative factors, there are several other conditions that can trigger the emergence of body dysmorphic disorder , namely:

  • Have another mental disorder, such as an anxiety disorder or depression.
  • Certain traits, such as perfectionism or low self-esteem.
  • Having parents or family who are too critical of appearance.

Symptoms Shown by People with Body Dysmorphic Disorder

In terms of a negative outlook and anxiety over physical appearance, the symptoms of body dysmorphic disorder may be similar to those of an eating disorder. However, the anxiety experienced by people with this disorder is not about weight and body shape. But physical deficiencies in certain body parts, such as hair loss, wrinkled skin, or a snub nose. 

Body dysmorphic disorder mostly occurs in people aged 15 to 30 years. People with this condition often feel embarrassed and restless because they think they are bad, thus avoiding various social situations. In addition, sufferers also often undergo plastic surgery to improve their appearance.

There are several symptoms or behaviors that can be a sign that someone has body dysmorphic disorder , namely:

  • Reflecting over and over for a long time.
  • Hiding limbs that are considered imperfect.
  • Asking others to reassure him over and over again that his flaws are not too obvious.
  • Repeatedly measuring or touching areas of the body that are considered imperfect.

If you experience these symptoms, don’t hesitate to discuss them with a psychologist, so that treatment can be done as soon as possible.

In addition to these behaviors, body dysmorphic disorder can also occur when excessive anxiety arises because you think your body is too small, too thin, or not muscular enough. Symptoms that can appear in conditions like this are:

  • Too much exercise for a long time.
  • Excessive consumption of nutritional supplements.
  • Steroid abuse.

Go to a psychiatrist if…

People with body dysmorphic disorder can repeatedly consult their doctor to find ways to improve their appearance. However, the purpose of the patient consultation can be less precise. Better discuss with a psychiatrist.

An examination to a psychiatrist needs to be carried out immediately, if you notice any inappropriate behavior in assessing appearance, especially if the behavior has:

  • Interfere with work, performance at school, or relationships with others.
  • Loss of desire to go out in public and feeling anxious around other people.
  • This condition can lead to severe depression and suicidal ideation.