051121 Do I look too skinny? Part 1 of 5

A brief review before getting more in depth in the future parts, just in time for the holiday season.

Am I too skinny?

The following comes from various sources, including the CDC (Center for Disease Control)

Body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) is a relatively common disorder that consists of a distressing or impairing preoccupation with imagined or slight defects in appearance. BDD is commonly considered to be an obsessivecompulsive spectrum disorder, based on similarities it has with obsessive-compulsive disorder. It is important to recognize and appropriately treat BDD, as this disorder is associated with marked impairment in psychosocial functioning, notably poor quality of life, and high suicidality rates. In this review, we provide an overview of research findings on BDD, including its epidemiology, clinical features, course of illness, comorbidity, psychosocial functioning, and suicidality We also briefly review recent research on neural substrates and cognitive processing. Finally, we discuss treatment approaches that appear efficacious for BDD, with a focus on serotonin-reuptake inhibitors and cognitive-behavioral therapy.

ody dysmorphic disorder (BDD) is a DSM-IV disorder that is characterized by a distressing or impairing preoccupation with slight or imagined defect(s) in one’s physical appearance. BDD has been consistently described around the world for more than a century1,2 Enrico Morselli, an Italian physician who called this disorder “dysmorphophobia,” offered this poignant description in 1891: “The dysmorphophobic patient is really miserable; in the middle of his daily routines, conversations, while reading, during meals, in fact everywhere and at any time, is overcome by the fear of deformity… which may reach a very ;painful intensity, even to the point of weeping and desperation”.3 BDD was later described by distinguished psychiatrists such as Emil Kraepelin and Pierre Janet4,5 and, over the years, numerous case studies have been reported from around the world.6

Despite its long history, BDD has been researched in a sustained and systematic way for less than two decades. During this time, much has been learned about the disorder, including its clinical features, epidemiology, and treatment. While still very preliminary, data are beginning to emerge on BDD’s neurocognitive deficits and underlying neurobiology. BDD is becoming better known, but it remains underrecognized.711 Because BDD causes substantial suffering and impairment in functioning, there is a need for increased recognition of this often-debilitating condition across all specialties.12

CDC Conclusions

Despite BDD’s prevalence and severity, this disorder remains underdiagnosed in clinical settings. Given the markedly poor functioning and quality of life, and high rates of suicidality, among these patients, it is important that BDD is recognized and accurately diagnosed.12,125

Interventional research on BDD is still limited; however, available treatment data are promising and indicate that most patients improve with appropriate treatment that targets BDD symptoms specifically. Limited data exist regarding BDD in children and adolescents or the expression of BDD in other cultures. There is emerging evidence that information processing deficits play an important role in BDD, but very little is known about this important topic. It is hoped that further research on BDD will elucidate the many aspects of this disorder that remain poorly understood, lead to more effective treatments and more treatment options, and ultimately enable prevention of this severe mental disorder.

Some people, no matter their current weight, never seem to be satisfied especially with those trying to lose weight and become slimmer. Perhaps this may be body dysmorphia.

This may turn into Anorexia, which by definition is named Anorexia nervosa (anorexia). This is a mental illness that affects how you feel about your body and how you eat. You think that your body is much bigger than it actually is, and may be very scared of gaining weight. You may also believe that you’d be a better person if you were thin.

Do you suffer from this life threatening problem? If so, consider these tips to help you.

But see a Doctor rather than attempting to control this on your own. Even after seeing your doctor you still may consider these tips–IF your Doctor feels it is safe for you to do so.

Consider these tips to help cope with body dysmorphic disorder:

  1. Write in a journal. …
  2. Don’t become isolated. …
  3. Take care of yourself. …
  4. Join a support group. …
  5. Stay focused on your goals. …
  6. Learn relaxation and stress management. …
  7. Don’t make important decisions when you’re feeling despair or distress.

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