Megan Fox says she has physique dysmorphia. What to know in regards to the dysfunction.

Megan Fox spoke in a current interview about her struggles with physique picture and the challenges of dwelling below the microscope of Hollywood.

“I’ve physique dysmorphia. I do not ever see myself the best way different folks see me. There’s by no means some extent in my life the place I cherished my physique,” Fox, 37, mentioned in a video interview for the Sports activities Illustrated Swimsuit 2023 concern. The actress has spoken about having physique dysmorphia and different psychological well being points prior to now.

Folks with extreme physique dysmorphia dysfunction can turn into reclusive, wrestle in relationships and endure from different psychological well being points, consultants say.

We spoke to consultants about physique dysmorphia, together with methods to know when you’ve got it and potential remedy choices and dangers. Here is what they mentioned.

What’s physique dysmorphia, also called physique dysmorphic dysfunction?

Physique dysmorphic dysfunction, or BDD, is a psychological well being situation. It is outlined as an obsession with a perceived flaw in bodily look – one that’s often imperceptible to others.

BDD, which shares similarities with obsessive-compulsive dysfunction (OCD), may cause extreme misery to those that wrestle with it. One type, referred to as muscle dysmorphia, extra usually impacts males.

The dysfunction can hurt folks’s psychological well being and shallowness. Many with physique dysmorphia additionally wrestle with anxiousness, despair and even suicidal ideation.

Ramani Durvasula, a medical psychologist in Los Angeles, mentioned it is very important word that physique dysmorphia isn’t the identical factor as an consuming dysfunction, which is a preoccupation particularly with physique form and weight and usually results in consuming, exercising and different compensatory behaviors.

Additionally, the preoccupation isn’t due to a noticeable deformity or malformation similar to a big scar. “It is the concept this perceived defect is often fairly minor in comparison with the quantity of misery and preoccupation it is inflicting,” Durvasula mentioned.

What causes physique dysmorphia? Who’s in danger?

There is not one particular explanation for BDD, which impacts about 1 in 50 folks in the US, and impacts women and men roughly equally, based on the Anxiousness and Melancholy Affiliation of America.

Specialists say the dysfunction usually presents in adolescence, a very powerful time for younger folks due to all of the modifications of their bodily look.

In some circumstances, there could also be a genetic predisposition to BDD or OCD, mentioned Ann Kearney-Cooke, a psychologist in Cincinnati who focuses on treating physique picture and consuming issues.

Different instances, she mentioned, the dysfunction could also be triggered by a destructive childhood expertise similar to abuse, neglect or bullying that made the individual overly delicate to perceived flaws of their look.

Tradition can play a task. And perfectionism can intensify the obsessions, Kearney-Cooke mentioned.

“It actually would not get higher by itself and, when not handled, can really worsen over time,” she mentioned.

How do I do know if I’ve physique dysmorphia? What are the signs?

Indicators of physique dysmorphia can current in a different way in every individual. However the hallmark symptom is a preoccupation with a perceived flaw in bodily look.

This prompts folks to have interaction in obsessive behaviors similar to checking themselves within the mirror for prolonged intervals of time or taking photographs on their smartphones to raised assess the perceived flaw. They usually really feel embarrassment or disgrace and attempt to cowl it up. They search reassurance and evaluate themselves to different folks – which has solely turn into extra tempting within the social media age, consultants mentioned.

Along with the psychological hurt, the dysfunction can take a monetary toll, Durvasula mentioned. In lots of circumstances, folks search costly beauty medical care from dermatologists, dentists and surgeons. These compulsive behaviors might briefly relieve the misery, consultants mentioned, however then it builds once more, creating a necessity for additional checking and fixing.

How is physique dysmorphia identified?

There are not any common exams to conclusively diagnose BDD, however individuals who suppose they could have the dysfunction ought to communicate with a medical or psychological well being skilled, who can assess their signs and diagnose the dysfunction.

“We glance to see whether or not this preoccupation is taking a toll on their life,” Durvasula mentioned.

“It is a individual for whom the preoccupation is inflicting what we name ‘social and occupational impairment,’” similar to spending extreme quantities of time or cash, making it tough to attend faculty or maintain down a job, she mentioned. “They’re displaced from friendships. They’re burning bridges with folks.”

Can physique dysmorphia be handled?

BDD is treatable, although it can’t be cured. Therapy choices differ for every affected person, however health-care suppliers are likely to suggest a mixture of cognitive behavioral therapies and drugs.

“We attempt to educate folks to determine what are their ideas and the way they’ll problem the distortions of their considering,” Kearney-Cooke mentioned.

In circumstances involving further psychological well being situations similar to anxiousness and despair, drugs could also be added to the remedy plan.