What really is body dysmorphic disorder (BDD)?
The mainstream media, flattered by an image of themselves, have coined the term "body dysmorphia", referring to someone who is dissatisfied with their appearance. This, however, is a very inaccurate depiction of the profound and visceral torment that individuals with BDD experience. Body dysmorphic disorder is a severe psychiatric condition that can completely alter the trajectory of the sufferer's life, interfering with all aspects of functioning, most significantly in the realm of interpersonal and intimate relationships. BDD is not vanity. It is not narcissism. In fact, body dysmorphic disorder is the antithesis of both of these. The purpose of this lecture is to allay the myths surrounding this psychiatric condition while providing psychosocial education that accurately describes this complex body image disturbance.