Body Dysmorphic Disorder and Addiction

Body Dysmorphic Disorder is a serious mental health condition that was once thought rare. It has only been in recent years that doctors have acknowledged that this is a serious condition that occurs more often than anorexia and schizophrenia cases combined.

What is Body Dysmorphic Disorder?

Body Dysmorphic Disorder is also known as body self-hatred. A person becomes almost obsessed with their appearance and how it is not up to perceived standards. Then they become self-loathing and may sometimes even self-harm.

Body Dysmorphic Disorder may be a result of many factors, including:

  • Personality type and predisposition for depression
  • Peer pressure, bullying, and societal pressures to look a certain way
  • Neglect or abuse
  • Low self-esteem
  • Traumatic events

Other causes may lead to this type of disorder. Body Dysmorphic Disorder generally begins in the pre-teen years but can start at any time in your life, including adulthood.

Body Dysmorphic Disorder symptoms

People that suffer from Body Dysmorphic Disorder can show many symptoms. Every person will be different and can suffer from just one symptom or multiple ones. Some of these symptoms include:

Body Dysmorphic Disorder and Addiction

  • Self-harm through cutting, scratching, or otherwise disfiguring themselves
  • Inability to look at their reflection
  • Continually putting themselves down and interjecting it into every conversation
  • Constantly touching perceived flaw
  • Seeking reassurance of self-worth continually
  • Obsessively using plastic surgery
  • Staying away from other people so they will not feel judged

Body Dysmorphic Disorder is a very powerful emotional disorder that can be overwhelming in many ways. For many people that suffer from this condition, the pain and shame they feel about their body not being perfect paralyzes them socially. Feeling lonely is often a trigger for addiction.

Body Dysmorphic Disorder causing an addiction

It is widespread for a person with body Dysmorphic Disorder to develop a dependence on drugs or alcohol. The calming effects often brought on by certain drugs or alcohol help a person calm their anxiety. Sadly, this often leads to addiction.

When you enter a recovery center, your substance abuse counselor will help you address all of the causes of your addiction. Addiction is much more than just overusing a substance. It has a root cause, and once that problem is addressed, entering into recovery becomes much easier.

Different causes of addiction

For some, addiction is a result of bad choices, a bad family life, or a result of an injury. For others, an addiction developed from social pressure, financial hardships, or other living conditions that they were unhappy with and could not seem to change.

The last group of people with addiction are often dual diagnosis cases. This means that they are suffering from another mental or emotional condition that is causing or resulting from the addiction.

A person with Body Dysmorphic Disorder and addiction is a dual diagnosis. This can be good news. This means that you will have a chance to get treated for this condition while you are in addiction recovery when you are in drug rehab. It’s a twofer!

Learning to live substance-free

As you learn how to manage or overcome body dysphoria, you will also be learning how to live substance-free. It will be very empowering, and you will leave the rehabilitation center feeling like a new person.

Part of rehab will also be how to discover triggers for both the addiction and the Dysmorphic Disorder. When you know these signs, you can act accordingly to not relapse or fall out of sobriety.

Addiction and Body Dysmorphic Disorder

A dual diagnosis can set you free

When you are suffering from an anxiety disorder and addiction, you feel trapped. You are overwhelmed with the emotional and physical problems that both of these conditions cause. You withdraw from family and friends, suffer at work if you can even continue working, and live in personal torment because of what is happening in your life.

Entering a substance recovery center can set you free of these harmful emotions and physical addiction. It can help you discover the problems that are causing you to feel this way, and it can give you the tools you need to overcome these problems.

Addiction recovery is a good thing. It is a way to regain control of your life and have a bright future. It is worth the time and effort. You will be happy when you see everything that the world will offer when you complete the program.

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