February 29, 2024

Teen dysmorphophobia, what is it?

Dysmorphophobia or dysmorphobia is an obsession concerning the ugliness or malformation of one's own body. It is an impression, an excessive preoccupation with her body and her changes, especially for the teenager. It can be called mental pathology.

More than complexes, a real phobia
It's not just a question of complex, too long nose, too small breasts or too big mouth. It is a real obsession with his bodily aspect, source of suffering. The illness can lead to severe depression or suicide attempts. It is sometimes accompanied by hallucinations. The causes are poorly known. Anorexia is a severe form because the teenager with anorexia is convinced that they are never thin enough.

Mirror my beautiful mirror ...
The body changes of adolescence are conducive to this pathology, especially among girls. Most often, teenagers will spend an infinite amount of time in front of the mirror trying to hide their faults, which they alone perceive. Their goal is to reassure themselves, but the time spent in front of the mirror often creates the opposite effect. For others, the solution involves constant appointments to the doctor, taking medication or the use of cosmetic surgery. Some will go to self-surgery or even suicide attempt.


Therapy to cure dysmorphophobia
You, parents, have an important role to play in helping your child to accept oneself as he is, to trust him and to get better. If the disorder persists, you should seek outside help. Dysmorphophobia is a symptom of deep malaise. Only therapy can overcome it. Behavioral and cognitive therapies have been proven in this area. Sometimes, antidepressant medications are added.

Special Report: Imperfect Me - the impact of Body Dysmorphia (February 2024)