Dynamic Daughters: Understanding Dysmorphic Disorder


Okay so here is a summary of all I have learned….and I am going to highlight specific aspects and explain why….but if you want to understand this disorder even more there are lots of great resources out there.  And I will give you the the whole MIND, BODY, SOUL….connects at the end of this post.  But for now…..

Dysmorphic Disorder:

(follow the above link to get the full details….but below is a summary)

A type of chronic mental illness.  The individual has a perceived flaw that is either minor or totally imagined.  The point is they obsess over it.  They obsess over appearance and body image for hours a day.  This obsession impacts daily decisions.  There is never a satisfaction with their body.  They seek procedures: minor or major, to “fix” these flaws.  They may lean on excessive exercise.

Just some of the symptoms…

preoccupied by appearance
extreme self-consciousness
frequent examination of self in mirror or avoid mirrors
believe others notice you in a negative way
avoid social situations
excessive grooming
compares self to others
don’t want to be in pictures
obsess over specific body parts: face, hair, skin, breasts, muscles…etc

Brain differences (structure or neuro-chemistry)
Genes – more common in a person who has a family member who has this condition.
Environment – life experiences, culture

Risk Factors:
This is just a short, very slimmed down explanation….
Some of the factors that increase risk of developing or triggering condition include:

relatives with disorder
life experiences: childhood teasing, trauma
personality traits
societal pressures or expectations
having another mental disorder such as anxiety or depression.

***Dysmorphia usually starts in adolescents and it affects men and women.

Why does this all matter to me?

I see more and more young women being bombarded by social media’s imagery of what a woman “looks like”….and how we “should” look like!

Even though we KNOW that there is airbrushing involved…there is some extreme things that are done…..and that the magazines, movies, shows, commercials….represent a very small percentage of the population….we are talking like less than 10%.

I recently read/heard that genetically speaking…there is only 1% of women who come by thigh gap naturally….born with it.

YET WE ARE OBSESSED WITH IT….all others who obtain in….do it at great costs…..

And further it is destroying the self-esteem and self-image in our young girls!

Which brings me back to Dysmorphic Disorder!

It is real…it has ranges, just like many other mental disorders.  Just like a person who may manage many other mental disorders, or a person who compensates with other mental “handicaps” of sorts….

Thus a person can have more severe cases than others….some may not have bouts come on all the time or infrequent.  Yet it is always there in the background.  It is how a young girl nurtures herself, and manages her daily stresses, daily influences that will make all the difference in my opinion.

Things that can help a young lady is to be in tuned with herself and admit when she needs help.

She needs to ask herself: how can I help myself?  Do I need to seek treatment? Or is this something I can manage with the help of a great confidant or support system?

Lifestyle/home remedies that can help:

Taking supplements/herbs that support the serotonin levels.
Learn more about the condition.
Pay attention to warning signs.
Avoid situations, even people that my trigger bad self talk.
Avoid: food, alcohol, drugs….substances that are going not support a nurturing mindset.
BE ACTIVE.  Yoga, walks, sprints, HIIT….are all great ways to keep the mind clear.

Other ways to support yourself/cope:

Write in a journal.
Don’t isolate yourself.
Stay healthy.
Read self-help books.
Join support groups.
Stay focused on goals.
Learn relaxation/stress management.
Don’t make important decisions when feeling despair/distress.

Prevention may not be possible but identifying if you are at risk and learning to truly love yourself early on can help.

Here are some great articles/self help/resources…
 to love self better:

Seriously, Let’s End the War with our Bodies

Understanding Body Types: How our Genes are a factor

A strong/amazing Woman not caring what Society Says she should LOOK LIKE


hugs, prayers, and lots of blessings,
~Kelly 😉

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