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The DSM-5 lists Body Dysmorphic Disorder under obsessive-compulsive and related disorders. The disorders in this section differ from developmentally normal worries, preoccupations and rituals in that they cause significant impairment in one’s life and progress beyond normal developmental periods.

Body Dysmorphic Disorder is characterized by a preoccupation with a perceived flaw in physical appearance that is slight or not apparent to others and causes significant distress in important areas of functioning (social, occupational, spiritual, etc.). This preoccupation causes the individual to perform repetitive behaviors or mental acts. Examples include mirror checking, excessive grooming, seeking reassurance and continuous comparison of his or her appearance to others. For this diagnosis, if the individual’s preoccupation is focused around body fat or weight, the symptoms must not meet the criteria of an eating disorder.

The specifier “with muscle dysmorphia” is used when one of the individual’s preoccupations is on the idea of his or her body being build with insufficient musculature.

The cognitive component of body dysmorphic disorder is centered in the individual’s level of insight. The insight specified ranges from “with good or fair insight” to “with poor insight” to with absent insight/delusional beliefs” in regards to the disorder related beliefs and symptoms.

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 Additional Resources

Kati Morton – What is Body Dysmorphic Disorder? – BDD