During her recent interview this past week, Katherine Jackson finally admitted to Oprah Winfrey that Michael was addicted to plastic surgery. It is difficult to say if Michael’s addiction to plastic surgery and his addiction to prescription drugs were tightly integrated. Certainly they were related in some fashion. Substance abuse and addiction can obviously be detrimental to one’s overall health and well being; however, so can abuse and addiction to plastic surgery. So why do people become addicted to plastic surgery? The answer usually stems from a psychological disorder known as Body dysmorphic disorder(BDD).
Here are some basic facts that you need to know about BDD:
Body dysmorphic disorder (syndrome)is a chronic mental illness in which you can’t stop thinking about a physical flaw with your appearance. Although many people may in fact have actual physical flaws, in patients who have BDD the flaw is either minor or imagined. More importanly, BDD patients often feel that their appearance is shameful and frequently they to not want to be seen by anyone. Body dysmorphic disorder has sometimes been called “imagined ugliness.”
When patients have body dysmorphic disorder, they intensely obsess over their appearance and body image, often for many hours a day. These patients may seek out numerous cosmetic procedures to try to “fix” these perceived flaws. However, BDD patients never will be satisfied and as a result frequently end up undergoing multiple plastic surgical procedures. Body dysmorphic disorder is also known as dysmorphophobia, the fear of having a deformity.
The good news about BDD is that it is treatable, once diagnosed. Treatment of body dysmorphic disorder may include medication and cognitive behavioral therapy.